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Observations & Images
14 May 2007
Approximate age of nestling(s) in days: 47

Rain storms off the Atlantic Ocean passed through the Refuge hiding the sunrise. The female was found perched just below the nest but it is doubtful it filled the measure as an effective umbrella.
As the morning progressed the skies cleared and the sun came out. Once sufficiently dried and warmed by the sun the female made off to see what she could do to satisfy the hungry cries of the nestlings.
Before long the female was back grasping a freshly caught fish in her talons.
The nestlings were happy to see their meal arriving based on the increased pitch of their cries. The vocalizations of the two largest nestlings are at times indistinguishable from an adult Osprey's which makes things a bit confusing now and then.
As soon as the fish landed in the nest the little nestling endured more abuse from its older sibling.
The little nestling cowered in the corner while the other two nestlings ate.
The aggressive nestling is ever watchful and quick to go after the little nestling should it raise its head.
The male Osprey made a surprise appearance to bring a fish to the nest which it left near the cowering nestling.
First one then the other nestling ate their fill.
The little nestling made a move toward where the female was feeding the other two nestlings which prompted this sibling attack to scare it away.
It appears the salvation of the little nestling is that once the aggressive nestling is satiated from being fed by the female it loses all interest in abusing its sibling. At this point the little nestling can move right in and take its fill which it can be seen doing here.
The female and the little nestling finished the fish the female had brought and the two moved to devouring the fish the male had brought.
The little nestling ended up eating a large portion of this fish.
If the little nestling can continue to get food in this manner it just might survive to fledge.
The little nestling gulps down a large piece of fish.
The nestlings now jump forcefully up and down while energetically flapping their wings. They are obviously eager to fly and the way things are going in the crowded nest flight can not come too soon.
If no food is present the nestlings appear very congenial with each other's presence. The largest nestling still appears to be above the squabbling of its siblings and has not been observed giving or taking abuse.
The male Osprey made another short visit to the nest area when he landed atop his old favorite snag seen at upper left. The female joined him at lower right.


A Northern Cardinal took interest in what I was doing. I believe it was interested in the sound of the camera shutter firing based on its movements. The bird came quite close; cocking its head in a quizzical way each time the shutter clicked. Finally a fiery red Cardinal appeared atop a nearby grapefruit tree and its cries sent my inquisitive little friend winging away.
The Swallows are starting to gather over the Refuge. At first only one was seen around the Osprey nest, then two, now a small flock is ever chattering overhead as they swoop and dive after insects in midair.
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OspreyWatch by Bob Montanaro
www.lunarcabin.com - - - - www.ospreywatch.org