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.
Both male and female were at the nest atop the boat when I arrived as show in photo. The property owner arrived about 30 minutes later and removed the nest. There are still some twigs on the platform - see photo - so hopefully they start building again before they start eggs.
Still not sure what's up here. Osprey was on the boat again - staying stationary. There were two other Ospreys overhead, neither from nearby nests as both were occupied by two. Seemed like osprey was treating top of boat like nest but nothing visible. She then started to move, flapped wings a bit perhaps communicating with male above. A turkey vulture also flew overhead with the two osprey. I had appointment and had to leave. So intriguing hated to go. Hope to learn more soon.
There was no activity at or around nest last couple of days with nest having just a few twigs. Thought may be abandoned but today one osprey flew in with a fish, ate, and flew away. There may be some additional nesting material but not much. Still not sure what's going on with this nest.
Stopped by to see if nest activity this morning. Osprey- believe the female - is perched on the pole sticking up from property owner's boat. It's been reported this pair tries to nest at that boat. The platform/ nest, about 50 feet away, is empty with some twigs and a small blue bird sitting on it.
Observed nest last few days with no activity and only a few twigs on platform. There were more very high winds during this period. Returned this morning and one osprey sat idle in center, there were no additions to nest. Returned to observe late evening and there was no activity.
Adults never established a viable nest. Brought a few sticks and visited the site for several weeks but as of mid-May 2015 were rarely there and now all the sticks have blown off as well. No siteings in my last three visits.