Operation Killdeer


Screengrab from a Youtube video via The Washington Post

Ottawa produces a fair number of feel good stories about animals year-round.

A Fox sleeping in a bus. (Link)

Raccoons stuck at a shopping mall, (Link) or in a fight in a McDonalds (Link).

Turkeys walking around down-town (Link) and going on top of busses (Link).

Or White Snow Owls stopping by. (Link)

While all these could be a consequence of the city invading adjacent farm lands and climate change, these news provide in their frivolity a much needed break from the non-stop 24 hours (not so good) news cycle.

This time it’s a female Killdeer (on the list of protected species) has decided to nest right in the middle of where the main stage of the biggest music festival of the summer in Ottawa, Bluesfest.

Of course, Ottawa being the capital of Canada, everything has a burocratic twist.

The land where the festival if going to be held is managed by the National Capital Commission a federal government agency.

This means that when the bird’s nest was discovered, the NCC had the responsibility of deciding if and how the nest was to be moved.

The festival organizers cordoned the area with yellow table and hired a security guard to make sure that the nest was not disturbed.

killdeer security

Picture via ctvnews.ca

With time running out, with just a week to the start of Bluesfest, the Federal Ministry of the Environment advised and authorized an attempt for the bird’s nest to be moved, one meter at a time, over two or three days.


TheProvince.com via The Ottawa Citizen

The risk is that if the nest is moved to far away or too quickly, the mother bird will reject the eggs, and they won’t be incubated.

Anyhow, after three days of moving the nest one meter at a time, operation Killdeer was a success.

The nest has been succesfully moved 25 meters away, enough to be able to build the main stage, and the mother bird is still incubating the eggs.

Ottawa at its finest


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