Pregnant Enough

I’ve received a couple of messages suggesting that Bey the Peregrine didn’t look “pregnant enough” in her video in last night’s post.

Pregnant enough.

Huh, I wondered aloud. What qualities specifically would make you satisfied that she was sufficiently pregnant to meet your exacting standards, I inquired?

Qualifiers like “slower”, “fatter”, and “more haggard” were the types of responses I got.

Lovely. I’m obviously not going to touch that. I can’t even hear myself think over the collective groan rising from a planet teeming with pregnant creatures who look absolutely amazing to the point that others are describing them as “glowing.”

But it does make me wonder what makes a bird look undeniably pregnant.

In the bird industry I long ago learned the term “egg butt.” Admittedly, it’s not the most elegant term, but I use it, and I understand what it means when others do too. And while it does mean that you can, almost, literally see the egg inside the bird, I have tried to photograph “egg butt” numerous times and have never been totally satisfied with the results. The shape, the buldge, the contour… egg butt is just a tiny bit too subtle for a photograph and too easily explained away as a bad angle or deceptive lighting.

So there is something more. Maybe it is in the balance, the posture, and the movement of mom herself, encumbered by the egg. Egg butt is far more obvious when you can observe the bird moving, and how the egg is causing an imbalance, so it is probably a better subject for video. I hope to crack this egg, as being sure a bird is about to lay is extremely useful. For endangered beach nesting birds, it allows fences to be constructed around fragile nests more quickly. For hard to reach nests like raptors’ nests, it can help time a costly climb to count the clutch. And in really hard to see/impossible to reach nests, verified egg butt might be the only evidence that a nest even exists.

Whatever the case, I am now inspired to capture egg butt this season in some form which can satisfy the requirements of even the most discerning Readers who, apparently, want and need animals to be more pregnant. Or at least, pregnant enough.

With that said, here is Bey earlier in the day. Is this pregnant enough for you?

What do you think? Is Bey pregnant? Enough?


  1. Oh yeah… Definitely pudgy down below.
    I recognized the waddle in the other video, though. I find pregnant birds adorable but I am concerned for them because I also notice a “droopiness”. Maybe thats what some mean by “haggard”? It’s hard work producing an egg.


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