Monday, 28 March 2016

Magpie Nest Dome

Just an update from the previous magpie nesting story.

    Here in Sherwood Park, the magpie pair have now got the dome erected over their nest. The whole nest looks much more durable and able to handle any storms that arise throughout the spring season.I see them also hauling beakfuls of grass and leafy debris into the nest to be used as an insulating lining. They are very protective of their new abode. I watched them chase a red squirrel away from the near vicinity of their nesting willow tree. The squirrel left but in his own good time.

Dome over the Magpie Nest. (Note the fungal infection in this willow tree.)
Magpie Gathering Twigs and Grass
      House sparrows are eagerly and busily gleaning food from all the shrubbery around Broadmoor Lake as well.
House Sparrow

     Out at the Beaverhills Lake area last week (March 20). Along with expected geese, mallards, ravens and woodpeckers, I saw a western bluebird,  crows, tree sparrows, northern harrier pair and a tree swallow. Seems very early for some of these migrants. I went looking for reported short-eared owls but did not stay long enough. I need to go around dusk for the best opportunity. Geese seem to be setting around,perhaps looking for ideal nesting sites.
Goose on Hummock in Beaverhill Lake Cattails

      I was also happy to see a cow moose and calf hiding in the bushes. They would not allow me a clear view so I left them to their browse.

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