Tuesday, May 29, 2007

2 = ## Osprey Chicks of Female 788-20124.

The past few days have been busy about the Osprey nest tree. Fish are brought in directly to the nest with greater frequency in the early morning. So, too, are sticks and Spanish Moss. And, yes, the chicks are moving about, peeking their heads over the rim of the nest and even pulling chunks of fish from carcasses on their own! Today I finally was able to get a reasonable images of single chicks in the nest, and one with both!! The opportunities occurred when Mom 788-20124 was beginning to provide shade to the chicks at about 1000. 788-20124 spreads her wings as the air temperature approaches 80F and the chicks move to take advantage. Mom also elevates her body feathers to cool her own body as the image above without a chick demonstrates. The chicks are safely underneath, protected from the heat of the sun.

Yesterday there was quite a crowd at the banding station. Renee, Sheila, John, Terry (a noted local birder and baseball nut) and I took turns between net runs looking at the Osprey nest through a spotting scope trying to catch a glimpse of a chick. Terry briefly spied two small heads in the late morning. I was able to confirm his sighting today. Each appears healthy and is growing juvenile feathers. Their size seems about equal. If all goes well, I suspect they will fledge just after the 4th of July.


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