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Observations & Images
11 April 2007
Approximate age of nestling(s) in days: 14

The male Osprey is involved in preening his feathers just before sunrise. Christopher Leahy in The Birdwatcher's Companion: An Encyclopedic Handbook of North American Birdlife describes the procedure: The basic preening action involves grasping an individual feather at its base and "nibbling" along its length to the tip or simply drawing the bill along the feather in a single, less meticulous action.
Leahy continues: This reattaches separated barbs, removes water and dirt, and in some instances applies oil. During preening, birds often come upon ectoparasites, which they usually seize and eat. The process involves all parts of the plumage and requires birds to assume an amusing variety of contorted postures.
Once again, a large fish makes the rounds between the nest and the male's eating perch. Here the male snacks upon the fish after retrieving it from the nest.
The female Osprey relaxes by stretching a wing and a leg.
Later the male left to soon return with a freshly caught fish. Here he dries his wings while standing upon his catch.


The male Osprey was not the only hunter in the area today. Here the Merlin has caught a small bird.
The Merlin moves to a new perch revealing the limp form of its prey clutched in its talons.
The Merlin takes the bird up in its beak to reposition it for eating.
The Merlin begins pulling the feathers off.
There was a very slight breeze blowing which sent the feathers raining down around me as they were pulled off by the Merlin.
Like the Ospreys, the Merlin kept interrupting its meal to look around for any potential threats.
The small bird was quickly polished off by the falcon.
What appears to be a Prairie Warbler passes by. Its yellow color is similar to the little bird the Merlin caught.
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OspreyWatch by Bob Montanaro
www.lunarcabin.com - - - - www.ospreywatch.org