Lily videos

I will be posting videos of Lily and the babies on YouTube.

Videos 1,2,3 are just Lily. We have no babies yet.

Video #1

Video #2

Video #3

Lily Day 16

I’m observing her enough that I know a little bit of her routine. When I take morning nest pictures she leaves while I’m still in front of the nest and then flies to the same tree. She stays there long enough for me to find her (one of the hardest things with my bad eyes and needing to take the glasses off to use the camera) and then, eventually focus. Then I usually set it on continuous shooting.

She scratches a lot too. I guess most wild birds have mites and stuff. It’s funny to see the contortions she puts herself through, scratching with that long beak.

Photos from day 16 with Lily.

Nest and egg size comparisions

Here are some photos of Lily’s eggs and nest in comparison to standard everyday items. Click on any photo to see it larger.


Lily Day 15

I have an obsessive personality and this is one of those times that it really pays off. Since all this is happening in my backyard, I have a lot of opportunities to observe Lily and her habits and more chances to “get lucky.” If I go outside (which I do about 10 times a day) to check on her and she is not on her nest, I know she will be back soon. I can hear her if she is nearby and she usually goes to the tree behind the fence or the wire overhead. Then I know she will be coming back to the nest soon.

Burst mode helps and I just got a tripod which I think will help even more.

Photos from day 15 with Lily.

Lily Day 14

Lily update for the day. I stood in the path and waited for Lily to come back to the nest. Got a few so-so shots of her landing. Then I just stood there and watched her for a while. It’s been really windy here today and I noticed that as the wind was blowing she kept stretching her neck longer and longer. She wasn’t snapping at any bugs in the air because her beak never opened. She looked like she was doing some sort of yoga moves. She kept it up for nearly a minute and then just snuggled back down into the nest.

Photos from day 14 with Lily.

Lily Day 13

Here are some of my favorite photos from day 13 with Lily. Each morning I go out and check on her and the eggs when I first get up. I check in again before it is dark. And I am in and out of the yard through-out the day. She tolerates me standing in front of her, snapping photos while she is in the nest, for a while and then often just flies off to the tree where I snap some more pics. Sometimes when she is gone I race to the back of the bush where the nest, wedging myself between the fence and the Toyon where she has the nest, so I can peek into the nest. I don’t suppose I should do that once the eggs hatch for fear one of the babies might get frightened and fall out of the nest.

Lily won’t come back to the nest when I’m back there but she chitters at me, to let me know she is there and I get out of her way and she comes back home.

Lily Day 12

Days are pretty much routine now. Much of her time is spent on the nest incubating her eggs. But she is still adding to the nest as you can see the added layer of white fluffy stuff at the top. I do wonder where she is finding her nest materials.

I have to really keep playing with angles to get some good shots. She’s placed the nest behind branches and leaves very well. I don’t want to get too close to bother/stress her and the Toyon branchs are very stiff, so they don’t move easily. It’s a challenge.

Lily Day 11

Today Lily was doing a lot of decorating around the nest. She brought in some tiny white feathers (there are already some deep in the nest) and little bits of mossy looking plant material several times. As usual, she didn’t want me to watch her do anything with it.

Lily Day 10

I have a routine now. First thing in the morning I go out and see if Lily is on the nest. If she is, I take a few pictures and then go back inside. If she is off the nest I wait and try to get a capture of her coming back to the nest. I’ve been able to get a few shots of her. Looking forward to more practice.

Sometimes she gets tired of posing for me or of me staring at her and she takes off while I am right in front of her. I guess she doesn’t think I’m going to do anything to the eggs because I’m standing about three feet away from her. Her first stop is usually the tree behind the fence. She looks so different out of the nest. Not quite as put together, though who can blame her after being stuffed in that tiny nest. She preens a little, scratches a lot, stretches and then often just sits there in the sun before flying off in search, I suppose, of something to eat.

Lily Day 9

I’ll probably start posting galleries now since I am taking so many photos of Lily. I imagine that number to rise even more once the eggs hatch.

We’ve had a few days of really heavy rain and winds. Last night was the worst and I had to stop myself from running out in the rain to check on Lily and the eggs. But this morning, everything seemed to be fine.

She was sitting on the nest when I went out and looked pretty wet and then flew off when I picked up the camera. She didn’t chatter at me to go away. It’s like she knew I really wanted to see what she been up to during the day and she was okay with it. (Okay, personification much? I know.)  I think she had a long, cold, and wet night out there and wanted some sun and some food.

It really helps that I can get so close. I’m only about a foot away, leaning over it. I wait until she takes off and the push my way to the back of the fence so I can look down into the nest. I don’t go that way when Lily is in the nest but she doesn’t seem to mind if she’s not there. When she comes back she lets me know, I get out of there, and she goes back to work. She hasn’t been stressing over it. I’ve been very conscious of that, going in close for just a minute or two.

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