Tag Archives: Super Mom

A SECOND PIPING PLOVER NEST!

Good Morning from Plover Central!

I hope everyone saw the earlier email; all three are present and feeding in the wrack and at the flats. Mom is using her foot today but either there is a new piece of seaweed attached to the part that is still wrapped around her foot or the old piece is coming untangled (wouldn’t that be fantastic!). We’ll just keep monitoring her. I hope the family heads down to the Creek today.

In searching for the chick last night, I found a second nest, with three eggs. This is wonderful and exciting and also follows the behavior of several other pairs around the north shore whose nests were wiped out by that tide and are now renesting. This is a huge commitment on all our parts. Please let me know if you need to spend less time on the beach with our new soon to be chicks and we will try to work out a schedule suitable for everyone.

New nest at Salt island

After that king tide of May 29th wiped out the nest at the Salt Island side, I couldn’t locate the #1 pair and didn’t see any signs of renesting, and no signs of the very pale female. It was very surprising a few days ago to see theSalt Island pale Mom in the roped off area visiting at #3. The Salt Island Dad has been spotted frequently by all of us but I do not know when the first egg was laid therefore we don’t have a definite hatch day. I will try to figure out an approximate time frame and let everyone know. Joe and Dave have been alerted and hopefully the exclosure will go up tomorrow.

All that being said, this is going to be a tough one I think, hatching so late during the busiest part of the summer and so far away from the Creek. We’ll just do the very best we can.

Thanks so very much again to Jonathan, Duncan, and Duncan. The lanyard and badges are such a tremendous help!!!

Happy Sunday!
xxKim

HAPPY MISTY MORNING FROM PLOVERVILLE AND THANK YOU JONATHAN, DUNCAN T, AND DUNCAN H

Good Morning PiPl Friends,

Sally and I were remarking last night how the chicks seemed to have grown overnight. The plumplings are losing their baby faces and are turning into tweens. All three were feasting in the tide flats and wrack. The tide again was high, not as high as the previous two days, and the receding water is leaving a smorgasbord in its wake. The beach is so quiet on these foggy misty days. Perhaps the peaceful time foraging has allowed them to put on extra ounces.

I only saw Mom very briefly this morning. She was not putting any weight on her right foot and there appears to be a new piece of seaweed attached. I am going to stop by later today and try to get a better look.

Jonathan arrived this morning at GHB with the most fantastic and perfect Piping Plover badges. I think he is passing the bag along to Heidi, who will pass on to either Bette Jean or Jane Marie, and so on throughout the day. A thoughtful gift for us all and so very needed. A HUGE shoutout and thank you to Jonathan for organizing and purchasing, to Duncan T for his wonderful graphic skills, and to Duncan H for helping to organize.

Heidi saw a Dogfish Shark several days ago at the Creek! I think this is the second sighting in the past week. I’ll post her video later today.

Have a great day!
xoKim

The chicks two days apart, at 14 days and 16 days old

RAINY MORNING PIPING PLOVER UPDATE

Good morning PiPl Friends, or Team Plover, as my granddaughter calls us,

All three snuggled under Dad on this wet and windy morning. I didn’t see Mom, but wasn’t there for very long.

No need for Ambassadors to go in the rain. There wasn’t a soul on the beach this morning and despite the weather, I am sure they are relishing the peace and quiet.

I took this photo yesterday of a pair of 25 day old chicks that I have been filming. You may recall their Super Dad, the PiPl that tried to roll the stray egg into the depression where the chicks were hatching. That nest had been destroyed by the same king tide that took out our nest at #1.

Sharing these photos to show the amazing wing growth that is taking place. The first photo is our chick’s wing buds at one day old, the next two at ten days old, the next at 14 days old, and the last is one of the Plover twins, at 24 days old.

Thank you so much to everyone for all your tremendous cooperation, updates, good thoughts, positive spirits, helpful ideas, and dedication to seeing this beautiful bird family survive on Gloucester’s most popular and beloved beach.

xoKim

Piping Plover chick wing buds one day old

Piping Plover chicks ten days old

Piping plover chick 14 days old

Piping plover chick 24 days 

BEAUTIFUL JUNE MORNING UPDATE FROM PLOVERVILLE

Good afternoon PiPl Friends!

When I returned home from filming this afternoon my husband remarked, “another perfect day in paradise.” So much to love about these fine, fine June days!The filament is still wrapped around Mom’s foot however it doesn’t prevent her from going after birds ten times her size. Here she is chasing a Grackle this morning

The tide again rose more than halfway through the roped off area. Both parents and chicks were feeding well this morning, spending almost the entire time in the roped off refuge. Jennie currently can’t locate the chicks as I write this, but I imagine they are sleeping during the heat of the day, with very full bellies.

Eating an insect from the tip of the grass

I arrived this am at 5:15 and all the way from the footbridge, I could hear Dad loudly and repeatedly sounding the alarm. There was a photographer with her gear inside the roping. She became Extremely Defensive when I asked her to step back ten to fifteen feet, trying to explain about Dad piping alarm calls when people are too close, and Mom just getting by with her injured foot. She would have none of it and became extremely argumentative. I walked further down the beach and away and she began to argue even more vigorously. I surprised myself when I blurted out ZIp It, which is what I say to three and half year old Charlotte when she is being super fresh.The Ambassador badges can’t come soon enough!

When going to and from the beach, take a moment to smell the Milkweed. The dunes are redolent with the sweet scent of honey and hay, the perfume of Common Milkweed. Common Milkweed is in full glorious bloom all around Cape Ann and it is the only milkweed that has that beautiful fragrance. I just wish the Monarchs were here, too. I am giving a presentation on the Monarch Butterfly and Climate Change, Tuesday evening, the 29th, for the Cape Ann Climate Coilition’s quarterly meeting at 7:00pm. Flyer and zoom links to follow. It is free and open to the public. I hope you can come!Common Milkweed (Asclepias syriaca)

The full Strawberry Moon rises tonight over Gloucester at 8:46. It is the last Supermoon of the year and the skies look promising.

Have a great rest of your day, and beautiful evening!
xxKimWake up!

HAPPY TWO WEEKS OLD PIPLS!

Good Morning Friends!

Gloriously chilly morning at GHB. Fifty two degrees! The chicks all three spent their two week birthday morning thermosnuggling with Dad and Mom.

Snuggles with Mom this morning

The tide came up nearly to the rock. The wrack lies entirely within the roped off area, providing lots of good foraging. With cool temperatures typically keeping beach goers away, hopefully today will be a peaceful one for the family.

High tide through the refuge

Mom is still limping, but moving quickly and flying at normal height.

Thank you to all for your daily reports! After yesterday’s downpours it was especially great to know the Family had congregated back in their refuge.

Thank you to Duncan T for volunteering to cover all empty shifts this weekend!

Have a super day!
xxKim

Clearing skies

SUPER MOM DOING OKAY

Good Morning PiPl Friends!

Thank you to all our PiPl Ambassadors and beach going friends for keeping wonderful watchful eyes on Super Mom and PiPl Family, and for all the great info sharing!All three chicks are beautiful and as sturdy as can be on this, their 13th day birthday. Mom is flying at a normal height level and managing to maneuver around the beach. The largest piece of seaweed has fallen off. The filament is still wrapped around her foot with a piece about two inches long trailing. Her foot does not appear to be as swollen and painful looking as yesterday morning. The light from the overcast sky was fairly low this morning and I could not get a really good image for us to look at. Will try again later this afternoon when I stop by to see how she is doing.

Yes to Barbara, I spoke to the boys on the beach that had run through the roped off area, showed him Dad as he ran by, and explained about why we care for our endangered/threatened species. They seemed sincerely apologetic and I suggested they may want to be PiPl Ambassadors next year 🙂 I am very glad they apologized to you too, Barbara!

Thank you to everyone who is helping with picking up the trash. Last year I thought the garbage left behind was horrendous but blamed it on Covid, this year no excuses. The objects are larger and number greater, and it seems to be getting worse every year. We need a national anti litter campaign but in the meantime we’ll just do the best we can. I have a super idea to share about a great solution (a revenue generator for the City, too) from a friend who lives and frequents beaches in North Carolina. People who leave trash behind are ticketed. Word gets out, everyone stops littering for a bit. Then folks become lax and the officers are sent back to the beach for a few days to ticket again. There are many creative ways in which we could address this problem. It is not a DPW problem for lack of cleaning, but a people problem. I filled one and a half large trash bags and barely, barely made a dent. This morning I focused on the area behind the dune roping and wrackline and found a large knife, sticking straight up in the seaweed.

In the future we will not be going into the roped off area to collect garbage until the chicks fledge (unless it is something dangerous to the chicks). Even though there were very few people on the beach and I was at the opposite end to where they were foraging, it was disruptive, especially to Mom. At other PiPl beaches, including the DCR beaches I am documenting shorebirds at, trash is not collected in the restricted areas. It’s unsightly, but the reasons not to go in far outweigh the aesthetic value of cleaning the restricted area.

Yesterday morning Bill, who has been daily walking GHB for decades, spotted a living Horseshoe Crab at the shoreline. In all his years walking Good Harbor he has never seen a live Horseshoe Crab. Neither have I, nor had a number of people we spoke to yesterday morning, seen a living Horseshoe Crab at GHB. We have all seen them at many of our surrounding beaches, but never GHB! If anyone has ever seen a Horseshoe Crab at GHB, please write and let us know. Thank you!

Thank you to all our Ambassadors, each and everyone doing a tremendous job keeping watch over our PiPl Family.
xoKim