Look for 2 adults on the nest. The adult pair will show pair bonding behaviors such as vocalizations, aerial sky dances, and the male feeding the female fish. You may see the pair copulating, which typically begins 14 days before laying eggs.
Females will lay 1 - 4 eggs at a rate of one egg every 1 - 2 days. After laying, incubation starts. Look for adults taking turns sitting low in the nest incubating eggs. The incubation period can last 35 - 43 days.
Chicks hatch ~39 days after incubation begins. Look for adults bringing food to the nest and making "head bows" into the center. Chicks typically can't be seen until they are 2 - 3 weeks old, so feeding behavior is the only way to know chicks are there.
Around 4 weeks after hatching, look for the heads of chicks to show over the rim of the nest, particularly when adults bring food to the nest. Other times they lie flat and are harder to see. Count the number of chicks in the nest before they learn to fly
Chicks begin flying around 7 - 8 weeks old, and are still fed by the adults. Count the number of chicks who have successfully fledged the nest and are observed flying.
Chick Last Observed
4 - 10 weeks after fledging, chicks begin leaving the nest area to migrate south, once they have learned to fly and feed themselves. Record the date that the last chick left the nest.
Look for signs of nest failure like adult abandonment, adults no longer incubating eggs or feeding young.
Chicks are signifigantly smaller than other fledgelings I watch. They both have started flying however and are doing well. Pictures to come. estimate there size to be 1/3 smaller than my average fledgelings.
This Nest shows only one chick and it seems much smaller than all my other nest's chicks are at this point. Maybe slightly younger? It seem attentive and watches alongside the female most of the time. The female is not alarmed as much by my presence but the foot traffic has tripled here lately. The male is still bringing branches and fish regularly.
I do visit all my nest once a week just behind on post. These two seem to be doing well. She is always very alarmed by my walking by the street to get to a good veiwing point. They noth circled me and a third joined in. I'm not sure from where. May investigate the island more this weekend. The male is very doting and quick to answer her alarm. The are harassed often by low diving crows and another osprey.