Fairly soon after laying one of her eggs, eagle-eyed viewers spotted that one of the eggs appeared damaged. On reviewing the footage, it looked like there were dimple-like marks. Their arrangement on the shell suggested that one of the owls had trodden a little heavily on the egg. Sometimes eggs are laid with a thinner than normal shell and this may have been the case. I was pretty sure that this egg would not be viable.
Today, whilst I was working out on a project outside, I received numerous messages and emails saying that Aluco was eating one of the eggs. Straight away, I knew that the damaged egg must have broken.
On looking back at the footage this, indeed, was the case. Aluco, on realising that it was broken, then proceeded to break up and eat the shell and the contents. This broken egg would provide her with essential nutrients and little is wasted in nature.
After she had disposed of the egg, I would imagine she was very sticky. She spent time picking off bits from the side of the nest box, before settling down on the two remaining eggs again.
I am pleased to say that the other two eggs look fine. Let's hope we have a smooth journey from now on!