Dad helps with egg-sitting.

Christo took on some egg-sitting responsibilities today.  He was on the nest for one and a half hours while Dora was away.  Here he is just before he leaves to find Dora (perhaps?).  She returned a few minutes later.

Teamwork: Caring for the egg

Dora calling for Christo. 

After a few minutes, Christo arrives and starts checking on the egg while Dora surveys the scene. 

They both leave the nest for about 8 minutes. Dora returns, checks out Christo soaring above, then settles back on the egg. 

Preening 101

Dora preening before rain starts.

What Is Preening?

Preening is a bird’s way of grooming its feathers to keep them in the best condition. While preening, birds will remove dust, dirt and parasites from their feathers and align each feather in the optimum position relative to adjacent feathers and body shape. Most birds will preen several times a day to keep themselves healthy.The uropygial gland, or preen gland, is an essential part of preening. This gland is found near the base of the tail and produces an oily substance that contains diester waxes that help waterproof feathers and keep them flexible. While preening, birds will spread this oil to each feather. Some types of birds, including owls, pigeons, parrots and hawks, lack a uropygial gland and instead have specialized feathers that disintegrate into powder down, which serves the same purpose as preen oil. Birds that produce powder down are less likely to bathe or immerse themselves in water and do not require the stronger waterproofing that preen oil provides.

music: Thrift Shop by Macklemore & Ryan Lewis