Restricted access area. In tall pine on northern bank of Intracoastal Waterway (Elizabeth River Southern Branch) at The Preserve on the Elizabeth, and not far from Bells Mill Park. Thanks to the kind folks at CFM, the HOA Board here, and HOA Board member Steve Arrendale in particular, for alerting me to the nest and its location.
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.
There is a nest around here somewhere, I believe. Observed 2 Ospreys here this a.m. and spent time observing one feed on a fish it had just caught. It doesn't appear the pair is using last year's tree nest, which appears to be empty.
No sign of anything on the nest. I'm not sure what's happened here. Nest failure? An Osprey--probably not one of the 'resident' Ospreys--flew by and I captured it. See 2nd & 3rd flight photos. I am unable to arrange photos in order taken.
Finally. An Osprey nest in a living tree! Thanks to everyone at The Preserve on the ELizabeth. One female hunkered down and sitting on eggs in a huge nest. I was never able to see more than the top of the female's head. The male visited once. The female started vocalizing loudly and I knew the male would be approaching soon. And approach he certainly did. Was able to squeeze off one shot of the male in flight. Not one of my better shots.