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Thread subject: Collecting Sticks
Name Date Message
Anne 06/21/05 04:50 pm I heard a lady on the radio today complaining that a pair of magpies had ruined her apple tree by tearing off the branches for the nest they were building. It made me wonder where the ospreys get their sticks. Do they tear them off trees, or do they go onto the forest floor looking for fallen braches, twigs etc.
Melanie 06/21/05 04:59 pm Judging from the close encounters I had with nests this weekend, I did see a little bit of greenery, like the end of a twig with a few loak leaves still attached, but I suspect mostly already fallen/broken branches. The ospreys around me are especially fond of old cornstalks. There has not been any leafy material brought into this nest. Since they generally live in a marsh/wetland setting, they are going to be a lot of broken things laying about. I've only seen them picking dead wood up off the shoreline here.
Tiger 06/21/05 05:01 pm I do believe that they often break them from the trees. Not sure where I read that but I will have a think and see if I can find the reference.

Marie 06/21/05 08:06 pm I have actually watched them fly to a tree and just snap off a twig without even stopping on a branch. They return with it in their talons. Other times I have seen an osprey stand on a branch and grab a stick from the tree and return to the nest with it. I have never seen them fly to the ground and pick up sticke even the ones that have fallen from the nest.
Mickey 06/21/05 08:51 pm this is a interesting question to me. I cant say Ive witnessed from the ground or from a tree. But if I had to make a half hearted educated guess, I would say both. Clearly they go to the ground to fetch seaweed.So why not twigs?
(unless there are seaweed trees in the nesting area *wink*)
Anne 06/22/05 04:23 am Wow, you must have had many great sightings of ospreys to have actually seen them do that Marie. I am inclined to think that Betty does that too because sometimes she flies off and is back in no time with a stick. And the dead tree at the Loch of Lowes nest site is just a trunk with a few thick side branches - no thinner branches at all.
Melanie 06/22/05 10:59 am I've seen them pick up sticks from the beach. I have 4 nests on my creek and one side has a sandy beach.

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Tom Throwe
Last modified: Sat Feb 18, 2006