Tuesday, 25 March 2014

New underwater cam off Grand Cayman

WE are super privileged to have the Teens 4 Oceans (T4O) and View Into The Blue’s (VITB) underwater Grand Cayman cam on our platform. You can visit the cam directly here: beta.wildearth.tv/cam/grand-cayman-east-end

The Grand Cayman East End cam is deployed at the East End of Grand Cayman Island in the Caribbean. It is situated just inside the fringe reef, 952 meters from the dock at Ocean Frontiers Dive Resort. The webcam is solar powered and the video stream is a wireless link from a floating platform. The instrument is a HD54-PTZ-cs2 self-cleaning camera with CleanSweep™. Tours of the reef are scheduled every ten minutes. and the video stream is used for a number of different educational and research purposes. Please visit Teens4Oceans for more information.

During T4O’s most recent trip to the East End in February 2014, students had the opportunity to witness and learn about the research of two scientists who joined us for our stay on the island. Dr. Yannis Papastamatiou of the University of St. Andrews shared his stories and videos of his deep wall survey for a future study of deep water coral reef ecosystems (specifically mesophotic coral ecosystems, or MCEs, as he described in this blog post). Students also had the opportunity to learn about the patented Biorock technology developed by Dr. Tom Goreau of the Global Coral Reef Allicance directly from Dr. Goreau himself. A prototype Biorock dome structure was placed near the Cayman Cam and can be viewed on the camera’s 360-degree tour of the reef. Read more about the plans for this project in this related blog post.

Thursday, 20 March 2014

Chat with Annette Devinney about Pittsburgh Hays eagles

Pittsburgh Hays eagle fan, amateur photographer and long-term nest observer, Annette Devinney, agreed to answer questions from eagle watchers in the cam chat room.

So much information. You can read the entire transcript here … it's 26 pages long!

Here is some of what Annette had to say ...

Annette Devinney:

I am an eagle enthusiast and amateur photographer and have spent hundreds of hours observing the eagles in Hays.

The interest in Pittsburgh and the Hays eagles is overwhelming. Because it's in such a metro area and we haven't had eagles for decades. The eaglet born last year was the first in 200 years.

Don't know how many eggs last year because no webcam to record. But only one eaglet.

The nest

The nest is about 40 yards from the ground but it's on a hillside, so about 200 ft from the trail.

Viewing from the ground ... you are far enough away from the nest that there aren't many rules, just etiquette. No loud noise. However they live above a train track so they are used to noise.

I’m amazed that they rebuilt in the same area as last season with all the noise and commotion!

The eagles

Photos of the bald eagles on the Western Pennsylvania eagles Facebook Page. Some on Flickr as well ...

These eagles never left the area since last January when they arrived.

I saw a raccoon messing with the nest in October when no one was in it.

I believe the eagles are about 5-6 years old.

They can live up to 30 years but average is less unless in captivity.

Daddy is smaller than Mama and has a little white spot on his right hip.

They began building about 15th September 2013. So several months and they will add on each year.

I have seen red-tails, turkey vultures etc. No match for an adult but a baby can be a target. They watch pretty closely.

Then she does something called mantling. Wraps her wings around the fish and makes a lot of noise. Letting everyone know that it's her fish and back off!

Have heard that they will take a small kitten or puppy in a yard. So bring them in if you live in Hays. lol

Eggs Hatching

Hatches are expected to be Wednesday 26th March, Sunday 30th March, and Wednesday the 2nd of April.

Mama and Papa will be nearby when they hatch. She may help baby out.

I know the parents can hear tapping in the egg prior to it hatching because it becomes thinner.

Baby will stay until she learns to fly and hunt on her own. Usually 3 months or so.

No one including the game commission will intervene unless the baby is left alone by a parent dying etc. They are wild animals and should stay that way.

We think juvie has left but don't know for sure. We really don't even know if she survived.