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.
One male osprey arrived today. He was in the nest, and re-arranged a few sticks. The substantial nest has settled a bit since last fall. But it is a big nest. After a while, he sat up on one of the roosting poles for a bit. I went outside to feed the songbirds, and the osprey took off, not too hastily, and peeped as he flew up the creek and into and about the oaks. He didn't come back the rest of the day.
Last year, our first osprey arrived on 17th Feb. So this is one week early. Bienvenidos, osprey friend!
Cedar Bush osprey followers: We continue to see and watch several osprey in our creek -- fishing, flying, eating fish. Are any of them juveniles? We don't think so. From the markings, I would say not. The osprey who are here seem to roost in some of the usual places -- on the scrag across the creek, on the red oak on our bank. Also in unaccustomed places. But no one is paying any attention to the nest. It has served its purpose for this year, apparently. A seagull hung out on a roosting pole for a while this week, but no osprey land on the poles or the nest. The fish the osprey are catching seem to be small, but the fishing is good enough to keep our local osprey population steady. We have seen perhaps three osprey at once, flying.
Our walnut tree is dropping many leaves. Tomatoes are just about finished. Time to plant leafy greens. Dan and Miles were out sailing in the 470 yesterday. Fall is in the air.
Hello fans of our little osprey. We have decided she's a female (brown feathers spangled as a necklace), although honestly I don't know how soon you are supposed to be able to recognize the sex of the bird. Our little osprey is doing fine. She has experimented with fishing, flying low to the water and dipping her toes in -- not like the adults, who sometimes make a long streak in the water, but more of a quick dip with her feet. We have not seen her flap up high and drop quickly to grab a fish. She hangs in the nest waiting for a parent to bring a fish.
The development in the past few days is that the chick is not so much at the nest. We saw the adult female in the wildlife tree yesterday, eating a rather big fish, and the juvenile was not begging nearby, or at the nest. We have thought we would see her fishing, successfully, before she departs, but perhaps departure is imminent.
We're not sure how many adult ospreys are around - sometimes there are as many as six, but we don't feel we have seen our pair together lately. Much will change in the next few weeks. The Cedar Bush Creek osprey season is coming to a close, for our local osprey. Still hot, muggy, some rain. There are plenty of fish! There have been bottle-nose dolphins in the creek.
Our little osprey chick took flight yesterday! We turned our heads for one minute (actually we were working in the garden) and she was gone. The wind was light most of the day, but it came around from the north and probably she took off in the wind. Adults hung out on roosting posts. We saw an adult on a roosting post this morning, and in mid morning the juvenile re-appears, and has been ever since, hanging on the lowest branch of the snag across the creek. We can recognize it is the young osprey by speckles on wings. Now one adult osprey is at the top of the tree, and the juve is on the bottom branch. It's a shady spot, not sure this little one has the flying thing down, but she seems to have made her first flights and is within sight of her nest, should one of the adults appear there with a fish.
Our little osprey chick is growing up! She has shed many small feathers, but still had speckles on her wings and back. Her head is white. The osprey pair bring fish back to the nest, and the chick is feeding itself, although it still takes food from the parent. We think the female osprey is doing most of the fishing, and feeding. Sometimes she gets a pretty big fish. The chick is testing its wings -- it flaps madly in a wind or a storm, and just today (sunny, 80 degrees, light wind) the chick jumped a bit as she flapped. We predict she will fly in the next week or 10 days. The chick's head is white now, not buffy, with a stripe.
Our osprey parents are taking care of one chick, who has a neat and pretty stripe by her eye and likes to stand and face into the wind like her mother. The chick sleeps a lot and isn't always up and in sight, but she more and more often is. The parents hang at the nest, the male on the roosting pole. Other ospreys fly by overhead, but our pair seem to keep the others at bay. Today is 05 June and a cool east wind has come up. We think it will be one month bf our chick fledges.
We think nest 7573 has failed, and there have been extra adult ospreys about. But our pair is feeding at least one chick! They rode out a big storm last night, 1.25 inches of rain, and high wind. They continue to bring sticks to the nest. There have been very hot days, the female shelters the nest. Male is bringing small fish to the nest regularly. The female flys off briefly, then returns. Right now they are both at the nest, she in the nest and he on the down-stream roosting pole.
At the landing, where #7573 is, we have not observed osprey at that nest for days, maybe 10 days or so. A friend reported that she thought the nest was abandoned, and it appears to have been.
We think our female osprey may be fending for herself. She is right now eating a fish, in the nest. Possibly has very recently hatched chicks. The male is an off-and-on presence. Two days ago, he was here, but generally we are not seeing him in his usual roosts, and he is not coming around with fish for the female, or relieving her of brooding duties. A bit mysterious. She rarely leaves the nest, but we saw her fishing and flying about earlier today.
Down at the mouth of the creek, at Myrtle and Milton's nest is, Leslie reports hatched chicks about a week ago.
Our female spent a couple of hours yesterday or the day before fetching sticks to bulid up the nest, and rearranging tufts of grass and such in the nest. She mostly sits, looks around -- where is her guy?
Our pair are holding up well in wind and weather on their nest, which is quite substantial these days. The female does most of the sitting. The male still brings tufts of grass and the occasional stick or twig back to the nest. He also roosts on one of the tall poles on the side. They hang out, catch many fish. Eagles come around to make trouble from time to time, and there has been a little osprey drama, but everyone is sitting tight. The osprey down by Oliver Landing is also sitting, constantly, low in her nest. We now (since 13th April) have hummingbirds here, and spotted a monarch the other day. Dan thinks he saw a swallow. The kingbirds have not been seen yet. The GBHeron nest was raided in the night about a week ago, all the eggs were raided, and the herons have abandoned their effort. We think they have come back individually and together, but we can't see any evidence of them laying another clutch. Right now, Monday 18 April, it's blowing a strong nor'easter, 50 degrees, and cold inside and out.
Our sweet osprey started sitting yesterday. Tonight, 01 April, she is down in the nest and the male is on the roosting pole in the evening light. Go, osprey friends! They are catching a lot of fish, some quite large. Menhaden and others. The osprey pair down by the landing has been brooding since April 23rd.
Our ospreys are hanging at the nest together, one on the roosting pole, sometimes, other times both in the nest. They have added considerably to the sticks in the nest, and are having sex -- both in the nest and in trees along the shoreline. They're taking splashy baths along the beach, catching fish, generally hanging around and looking very beautiful. They are both fishing and catching fish of various sizes.
Our osprey's mate arrived this morning. All day today they have been on the nest together and separately. Fishing, re-arranging sticks. There seems to be a little bit of drama with another osprey, also. A pair arrived on Sunday at Kay's nest down by Oliver Landing (nest #7573).
We had up to three osprey here on the creek last week (18-19 Feb.) but it's unclear how many are here now, actually. Maybe just one -- and s/he is spending a lot of time in the oak tree on the bank, watching the nest. Also on the roosting pole on the nest. And yesterday this osprey (we think it is the female, bc of brown speckles on the breast) started bringing sticks to the nest. Still, spending most time in the oak branches. Catching fish. Chasing off eagles.
Welcome friends! On Thursday morning (17 Feb.) Miles reported an osprey near Briggs Cove Road (in the sky). Chris reported this to me, I reported to Dan, and then Miles, Dan, and I all found ourselves at Oliver Landing together, scanning the sky for our osprey friends. Maybe, maybe. Then, later in the afternoon, Dan and I observed an osprey here in the creek, near us. Not on the nest, but flying over. Peeping. By the end of the afternoon, we had seen a total of three osprey. Just passing through? Or returning for this season? One of the osprey has stopped to survey the scenery from the top of an oak on the bank. An osprey also took a fish up to the white oak, where they typically have roosted to eat fish. On Friday afternoon (18 Feb.), an osprey (female, I think) came to one of the roosting supports on the nest off our dock. She stayed quite a while. Never jumped down in the sticks, though. She was not joined by another osprey. There were eagles in the creek, and a little bit of drama chasing each other. This morning (Saturday 19th) one osprey had a fish up in the white oak. No activity at the nest. We have been watching down the creek, for osprey at the Oliver Landing nest. No osprey have landed there, that we have seen. It is 50 degrees right now (12:30 p). It was 27 degrees this morning. Bright -- sparkling, in fact -- and blowing a gale (SW 18 G 25). I was expecting our osprey promptly on 28 Feb. Daffodils are blooming on the lane. Spring is here.
We’re not sure how many ospreys are here. Was getting ready to conclulde that the adults are gone, but a female juvenile who hangs in the nest, and who has been fishing successfully this afternoon, just had an adult deliver a juicy morsel to her. The adult dropped off part of a fish, and the young ospery started protecting it and peeping immediately. I thought I might not be able to tell an adult from a juvenile now, but the juves, still have a little creamy edge on their wings and they are by no means quite as big or as dark or as expert on the wing as adults. I wonder how long adults will hang? The nest down at the mouth of the creek, at the public landing, is essentially abandoned.
Several juvenile ospreys are hanging around, on trees around the creek near the nest, and in the nest. Usually if any chicks are in the nest it is just one, or two at the most. They're not there all the time. They seem to like to sit in pine and oak limbs, and on the limbs of dead/wildlife trees, and keep an eye on the scene and on each other. The big scrag across the creek is also a frequent perch. This afternoon I saw an adult sitting at the top. We can still recognize the juveniles by the white edging on their feathers, but it is very hard to tell them apart -- we don't know whether the young osprey we see are the ones original to our nest, or if they are from the nest out by the mouth of the creek. That nest appears to be abandoned. The young osprey are catching some small fish, but we have not actually seen them dive. They also chase each other without seeming to take it very seriously. We have seen much osprey drama this month.
We watched one of our two remaining chicks fledge on July 5th. On that same day, a third chick arrived in the nest and hogged the food. The outsider chick displayed aggressive behavior, seemed to try to stand on and bite the other two chicks, but then moved in on the food. The other two chicks hunched their shoulders and faced another direction. Right now we are experiencing this third chick, which we think could possibly be from the nest down the creek (which had three successful chicks). Those chicks have all fledged. One of them MIGHT have decided to come here and make itself at home. There are three chicks on the nest right now.
On the evening of July 5th we were out in a boat with neighbors and rode around the osprey pole, while the three chicks sat on the nest. We hoped the interloper would fly off, but it didn't. Today (Wed. 07 July) I watched an adult osprey (likely a parent from our nest) try to mob a juvenile osprey perched on the branch of a scrag across the creek.
From what we can tell, for sure one of our own chicks has fledged. Two of the three chicks in the nest are feeding themselves. This morning there were three in the nest, and at one point there was only one chick, and a parent (female) was feeding that bird, who seems to be the smallest, or might be th smallest of the new generation.
Overnight from Sunday to today (20-21 June) we seem to have lost one of our three chicks. Eagle predator? Maybe? The chicks did not seem to be agressive of or toward one another in the nest, so we don’t know what to think. Sunday there. were three. Today (Monday), all day, we have only seen two chicks. One interesting thing we observed was that a bald eagle flew over the nest at one point and the chicks got way low. Parents are not spending much time with the chicks.
Yes we have three chicks! Our osprey pair is working hard to keep their brood healthy and safe. Bald eagles threaten, and both chase them. The chicks are active and healthy, the parents seem to take this all in stride. The female spends most time at the nest. Small and medium-sized fish are brought to the nest off and on. The parents feed themselves first. The chicks are not agressive with each other or clambering too much for food. We have had an inch or more of rain, and the temp is about 70 right now. A big change from the heat and drought. Two juvenile GB Herons are in their own nest at the top of the pine tree on the bank. One appears to have fledged and returns for food. One perhaps has not yet taken flight. Of the four, one is unaccounted for. The two remaining seem to hate each other and are very competitive. The parents, when they come, can not bear to spend much time with these raucous offspring. Summer is here!
Chicks hatched probably about May 11th. Around the 18 we observed little chick heads waggling. Two. We know there are 2, there may be 3 chicks. The nest across from Oliver Landing has three chicks, and they are a week to 10 days older than our chicks. Much fishing by the male osprey here. Great Blue Heron chicks are enormous, should flectge at the end of the first week of June. Our osprey is still bringing sticks back to the nest. The male hangs around for a bit after he brings a fish. The female sometimes leaves the nest. The weather has been exceptionally dry, and hot. Cool spell now, more normal temps.
Our ospreys are still trading incubation duties. Both male and female had a nice bath, separately, on the spit across the creek at low tide two days ago. She seems to be spending more time on the nest than off, and he hangs nearby, although he’s not there right now.
I did some research on white-throated sparrows, this is not their breeding area. Today I think the birds nesting in the lower quarters of the osprey nest are house finches. They come and go, there is plenty of room for them, they hop about and hang in the box where there is a corner without many twigs.
Herons talking quite a lot w their chicks, or each other. We have not seen any heron-chick heads in their nest.
Our ospreys are both spending a lot of time at the nest, either sitting on eggs or observing the world around them from the roosting posts. Mostly the female sits on eggs, and the male sits on the roosting post. He brings the remains of a fish to her, and she flies off and eats it, leaving him to sit on the eggs.
We have observed a small bird living in the osprey nest, deep in the twigs. This morning I identified it as a white-throated sparrow, who comes and goes. Conceivably there are baby birds in there, and their first flight is going to have to be a big one!
This week we also found blue eggshells on the sandy marsh area behind the oyster-shell sill — from the great blue heron nest high in the pine tree along the bank. We found eggshells, larger than a chicken egg, two days in a row. They must be feeding their chicks now.
A powerful storm roared up the creek on Wednesday, with gusts we estimate up to 50 or 60 mph. Two ospreys sat on the nest during the storm, holding on for dear life, it would seem.
There has also been some commotion with a third osprey — can’t really tell what’s up with that. There are at least 2.5 nests on the creek, bc an osprey seems to have claimed the falling-down duck blind at the mouth of the creek. The duck blind here by the cove just down the creek is truly a ruin, falling apart.
Our female osprey was sitting as though on eggs on 01 April, and definitely since 05 April she has been on eggs. She sits low in the nest, and spends most of her time there. When her mate brings fish to the nest, she takes the fish and seems to give him instructions to sit on the eggs, while she goes off to eat the (rest of) the fish he brought. He often sits on one of the perch poles while she is sitting on eggs.
Both ospreys are fishing madly. The nest has been built up considerably. The female seems to be spending more time at the nest, but she does not seem to be brooding over eggs so far. They're mating enthusiastically. Just as a note, we saw our first black snake today. And, unrelated but worth noticing, the pair of great blue herons who are nesting at the top of the pine tree on the bank seem to be sitting on eggs now, although they are also still adding sticks to their nest.
Today the ospreys are still bringing sticks to the nest. They have started some preliminary sexual activity. The female seems to be spending more time at the nest than the male, but they are often there together. Each are catching fish.
We see osprey occasionally. Two days ago one, with a large fish, was chased out of a tree by two eagles. The osprey dropped the fish. I think the osprey we see now are just passing through. The other day one actually landed on the nest, and sat on the nest (grass is growing in there now!) and on the roosting pole. But mostly kingfishers are occasionally using the roosting poles. Our nest is piled high with sticks, looks very sturdy, and I guess it's in as good shape as possible for weathering winter, before our osprey return at the end of February. Adios for this year, friends!