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Thread subject: Osprey Update.Patience rewarded!
Name Date Message
Marie 08/03/04 12:20 am It is amazing what I see and hear, when I stand for two hours and watch the ospreys across town.This is the nest with two chicks that I visit most often. The many sounds that I hear include 1) FLYING AIRCRAFT overhead that the chicks watch intently. 2) Trains! We also have a railway track that runs right behind the houses across the street from this ball park where the nest is situated. I had to smile when the train came hooting along its tracks at 5pm. Infact I hooted with laughter for how many times had I posted this obs on the computer watching the DPOF as the trains moved through the night.
Persistance and patience paid off for me this evening. The female was on a different light pole when I arrived. The male was high on his favorite perch. The chicks sat up preening in the nest. The female uttered her call after 45 mins and off flew the male to get a fish. Forty mins later he arrived with a fish. The female had returned to the nest earlier as there was a Cooper's Hawk flying around. Her call notes changed to her alarm call but the chicks didn't 'hit the deck' as we had all seen on the DPOF. Guess the hawk wasn't very big or a real danger. Once the fish arrived I watched her feed the Alpha chick first. They were all making little noises throughout the meal. Meanwhile the male flew to a snag which was quite low so I drove over to see how close I could get. The road goes up an incline at the back of the ball park. I was able to get relatively close while he sat watching his family eat. The female seemed to be thanking him while she herself ate. It took 30 mins to get through that fish.The male flew off after circling his family to get another fish for himself, hopefully!. It was time for me to go, but as I looked back at the nest the alpha chick, with wings outstretched, was up above the nest holding air for 5 secs. I stretched out my wings and shouted YES!!!
cathy 08/03/04 12:43 am How wonderful to see all in context. Now we all know and have observed the routines for feeding from inside the nest perspective, but it would be good to see the parts outside our DPOF nest view (a metaphor for our limited views of life experiences perhaps). Are these chicks just learning to fly? So they are a month behind the Brookhaven ospreys. I was wondering about those at the end of King County runway. I see a dark osprey bending over the edge of the nest and heads sticking up. I think there are 2 chicks. But sometimes I need none - so I was wondering if they had learned to fly.
cathy 08/03/04 12:44 am The last sentence should read - sometimes I see none..
Marie 08/03/04 01:42 am Yes cathy, this nest at Colville Road seems to be late. I think in the next few days No1 chick will be flying. The other nest I visit at View Royal, the osprey chicks fledged around the 17th-20th of July. Their nest is out on a pile-driver in the harbour. Too far out to get close, but there were three chicks in that nest. The best nest site at Colwood was predated, about a month ago. Brookhaven has given me all the insight as to what is going on up there in the nest as well as interpretation of the calls. Even before I see the male osprey coming in with a fish I see the posturing of the female and chicks in the nest and notice the change in the call of the female. Amazing!
Celeste 08/03/04 05:23 am When one has the opportunity to see an osprey nest in person, we are able to understand the events that we are witnessing because of the nest we watch here on this site. We understand the chirps and posturing and can almost forecast what is about to happen. Our experiences viewing the surroundings of the nest, in turn give us the imagination of what is going on when we view our nest "inside". Thank you Marie for your patience in watching for two hours and providing these insights to us. It certainly is amazing!
Cecilia 08/03/04 08:38 am Sounds like you are learning how to get on "osprey time" :-) It's amazing that you can watch ospreys and eagles on their daily rounds so close to your home. Makes me long for a life away from these big cities on the east coast :-(
Marie 08/03/04 11:05 am Yes everybody...I am Sooooooooooo Luckey! Here's a web site a biologist sent me for Our very own Victoria and surrounding areas web site.
cathy 08/03/04 02:21 pm A passage from David Gessner "Return of the Osprey" (thanks Celeste and Nancy L for introducing me to this author)
" From my angle, looking almost straight up, I could see no sign of the young that rested in the nest, but soon enough one of the parents - the mother, I suspected - was floating nearly on top of me, less than twenty feet away, blowing sideways and swooping back and forth in the wind as if swaying on a giant puppet string. Her urgent cries came faster and faster, calling out, "Don't come closer" and "Don't hurt my babies" and, finally, urgently, "Back off or I will hurt you!" For a second, I didn't back off, euphoria rooting me in place, staring up at the nearly eagle-sized bird that was clearly and urgently speaking to me. But even if I wanted desperately to stay there, to draw that moment out as long as I could, I had to acknowledge just what the bird was saying. And so, after a minute or two of rudeness, I finally listened and, minding my manners, retreated through the reeds. It only seemed fair that I give way, after all, since I was there as a mere watcher, a collector of moments, while she was living a life."

I liked that idea of our watching from the security of our homes and our computer monitors, while the ospreys we watch are out there trying to do what they have to in order to live. Its such a privilige to be able to see this intimate view of their lives. If only they knew.. (they would send Mickey urgent emails on Ospreynet telling us to back off - or perhaps send a thank you note or perhaps the verbal equivalent of "hooding")

Copyright © 2004 DPOF

Tom Throwe
Last modified: Fri Dec 31 23:49:43 EST 2004