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Observations & Images
26 April 2006
Age of nestling(s) in days: 15

From this angle the nest is beginning to look like an old-time sailing ship with all the rope hanging about. No jokes about a crow's-nest, please. The female Osprey stood around on the edge of the nest for over an hour before the male made an appearance.
The male came lugging a large fish in his talons. He bypassed the nest and disappeared into the pines. Pelican Island NWR Ranger Joanna Taylor has identified this fish as a Spotted Sea Trout.
Another hour passed in which the female called out futilely for her mate. When he did not show up she flew off to the lookout perch leaving the nest without any adult supervision.
She stayed on the lookout perch for only a few moments before flying off toward the Lagoon. I feared what might happen to the nestlings with both parents gone and was uneasy about the parents abandoning them for too long.
The female's intention in flying off such a great distance was to collect material for the nest. Here she lines up on the "Y" shaped branch at left.
She succeeds in breaking the branch off.
She heads back to the nest with the branch in her talons.
One of the hatchlings looks out of the nest probably mystified at the absence of both of its parents. As it turned out, I was not the only one watching the nestling with interest.
A Black Vulture soaring by had noticed the unguarded nest with its defenseless occupants and had begun its approach to what must have looked like an easy meal. Luckily, the female Osprey arrived back at the nest carrying the stick in the nick of time to ward off the Vulture seen here leaving the area. If the female had arrived a few moments later things might have gone quite horribly for the Osprey family which points out they must remain continuously wary of the dangers lurking around them.
The female Osprey occupied herself with working on the nest.
The male finally decided to bring the now headless fish to the nest.
The male comes in for a landing. The Ospreys have been building up the sides making the nest deeper so the hatchlings were not visible as the female fed them.


Two for one. What may be a Merlin perches near a Dragonfly, at lower left, resting in the heat of the afternoon.
The neighboring Ospreys are still working on their nest.
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OspreyWatch by Bob Montanaro
www.lunarcabin.com - - - - www.ospreywatch.org