I really appreciate this link being put on the site. (I seldom get into the Cafe so have missed a lot). My wife and grandkids are mesmerized. We are a little concerned about one of the chicks that seems to be a little smaller and the bottom of the pecking order. I'm guessing it is the youngest one. Seems like it hardly gets any food. I know Nature can be cruel, but this little guy is tugging at our heartstrings. Any insight on the dynamics in the nest?
(old Gaelic saying)Chan eil h-uile facal sireadh freagairt. Not every question requires an answer.
No worries MyBraska. Same thing happened last year. The little one is a few days younger then the others and will get more than enough food. Last year E3 was one of my favs. He was a little go-getter And E1 was the dominator. E1 was constantly putting the licks on the other two, Especially E2. Everyone was worried to death about E2 not getting enough to eat because it was always cowering away from E1. All three grew up just fine. E2 ended up getting snared by Bob (Guy in charge of the Nest Cam) and getting the tracking harness put on her. She became known from then on as D1. You can find a link to the tracking website on the UStream page. She has flown hundreds of miles and is thriving now. Odds are D14 (the lil one in the nest now) will be perfectly fine. You're right you can't predict nature, but this pecking order situation is nothing different then any of the other previous eleven hatchlings have gone through and Mom and Dad have successfully raised them all just fine.
Right now they are all in a huge growth spurt and are eating non-stop. After the fuzz is all gone and the pin feathers come out and start to grow into usable feathers the feedings will start to slow down a little more. That's when the real fun starts. When they start learning to flap the wings and start hopping around.
It all goes so fast so just enjoy the show and try to apply the whole worry-free zone mentality.
I spent waaaay too much time watching and capturing vids on these guys last year. I still have them up on the screen of one of my monitors pretty much all the time but I just don't take the time to capture the vids this year. Plenty of others that can do a great job of that this year. If you want to see some of my vids from last year to get an idea of what to expect with these little guys go to http://www.youtube.com/bigrediggy. I've had over a half million views on my videos. These little boogers have really become stars.