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Observations & Images
30 June 2006
North Nest/South Nest

North Nest

A long day at the Refuge saw the north nest Ospreys fishing over the Indian River Lagoon before settling down to perches under the nest.
The following images reveal what happened to one of the north nest nestlings using images from 26 May 2006 and 30 June 2006. The image at left was taken on 26 May at the base of the nest tree looking up at the underside of the Osprey nest.
The ground around the nest tree is littered with odd branches and other debris that have fallen from the Osprey nest. A clutter of sticks is shown in this picture from 26 May.
The remains of one of the Osprey nestlings on the ground near the nest tree is seen in this image taken on 26 May. Based on the condition and the appearance, it is probably the nestling that was observed dead in the nest on 18 May 2006.
This picture from 26 May shows the remains of one of the nestling's wings. Any number of scavengers may have been at work on the body.
The underside of the wing shown above.
The condition of the remains upon returning to the site on 30 June. The remains were in good enough condition for Pelican Island National Wildlife Refuge Ranger Joanna Taylor, who accompanied me for part of the day, to identify blood feathers confirming it was a nestling.
A collection of nestling bones in this image taken on 30 June. Note the long vertical bone second from right which can be seen to be hollow at its bottom tip. Ospreys, like most birds, have hollow bones which help to lighten their bodies allowing for flight.

South Nest

In a bit of a reversal, the female south nest Osprey is reduced to watching the nestling eat a fish which the male had brought to the nest. The nestling consumed the entire fish.


A Killdeer which resides in the vicinity of the south Osprey nest.
The Killdeer performed a "broken wing" routine to try and lead me out of the area.
The Killdeer must have a nest with eggs or young in the area which it is trying to protect.
A Brown Anole clings to a tall stalk of grass.
Brown Pelicans gather on the Manatee Zone sign in the Indian River Lagoon which is visible from the tower at the end of the Centennial Trail.
A loud, cat like cry caused Refuge Ranger Taylor to search around a group of palm trees in a brushy area just off the Centennial Trail looking for its source. She discovered the loud cries were emanating from this unfortunate frog caught in the fatal grip of a Black Racer.
The plight of the frog was sad to behold. We did not stay to see the outcome but can guess how it ended.
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OspreyWatch by Bob Montanaro
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