Living on Osprey Time Volume 2: Issue 2
Pam Narney firstname.lastname@example.org
March 4, 2022
A dark brown flash, white tipped and tailed, streaks through the sky chased by a smaller white and brown flash. An osprey is chasing an eagle.
The first sign that Gracie and George are back. Today’s score: eagles 0, ospreys 2.
Establishing Their Claim
For ospreys defending their nest is a full time job. Reestablishing their claim to the nest requires constant vigilance and many sorties. Gracie chased a blue heron out of the nest. Then George went after a crow.
Sparrows routinely nest under the osprey nest. They coexist. The sparrows have a safe home. The ospreys are not bothered by their squatters.
To complicate their life, another osprey, a rival for Gracie’s affections, materialized. George has more work to do.
Ospreys mate for life and have an exceptionally high nest site fidelity. Fidelity is another sterling quality that recommends osprey to us as stellar examples of exemplary behavior.
For weekenders, this fidelity can cause headaches. March is the time to check your property for osprey nests and remove the nests if they are in unacceptable locations. If you allow osprey to nest on your boat, roof, chimney, etc. you will never convince them to nest elsewhere. Once they lay eggs, the nest is active. Active osprey nests are protected by The Migratory Bird Act and can’t be removed.
A female mallard flies into the nest, comes face to face with an osprey, does a quick about face and lands in the water. It happened so fast I couldn’t get a picture.
For me, photographing osprey is like sailing: 99 % boredom as they sit calmly on their nest, then one % frantic movement. Catching them in action is almost impossible.