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An Intro to OspreyZone

The Story of DDT

Osprey Rescue

2020 Clips

Bald Eagles Visit Nest

Ospreyzone Highlights: May 21-29, 2020

OspreyZone Highlights: May 15-20, 2020 - The Intruder

OspreyZone Highlights: May 7th-14th, 2020

OspreyZone Highlights: April 15-21, 2020

OspreyZone Yankee

March 18, 2016 Timelapse

The Summer of 2015 by GinaM

Osprey Rescue Extended - July 30, 2015

Osprey Zone Highlights - June 28, 2015

Osprey Zone Highlights - June 19, 2015

osprey 07/11/15 squirt

First Sighting

George and Gracie's First Baby

Eggs Over Easy

Changing of the Guard

Breakfast is Served


Feeding Time

First Love

Let's Hang Out

Hard to Get

Little Brother


Dinner is Served

OspreyZone Montage

OspreyZone Highlights: George Returns

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Belle’s Journey

Written by Dr. Rob Bierregaard & Illustrated by Kate Garchinsky

Take flight with Belle, an osprey born on Martha’s Vineyard as she learns to fly and migrates for the first time to Brazil and back–a journey of more than 8,000 miles.

Click HERE for more information!

IMPORTANT: Messages from osprey experts

Rob Bierregaard July 1, 2015 at 7:24 am
I haven’t seen the little guy yet this morning, but I would be very surprised if he survived the night. That sure was tough to watch yesterday, but that whole process is as much a part of the essence of being an Osprey as is eating a fish. It’s part of the life of Ospreys that was rarely seen before we started putting cameras in nests. As hard as it is, we should not label the behavior as mean or cruel. Being mean or cruel implies that there is intent to do harm just for harm’s sake. Those young were responding to a set of stimuli (very little food being delivered to the nest and the presence of a very small young) in a way that evolution has hard-wired into them. It helps ensure their survival. Nature is not cruel. It is harsh, unforgiving, and often random (had the little guy been born 1st, he would have been just as aggressive as was his sibling), but not cruel or mean.

4818eecc88292926c58414a82c884c71Paul Henry ospreyzone July 1, 2015 at 8:17 am
Thanks Rob for bringing your knowledge and experience to help us all gain perspective here. We are all saddened by the events that unfolded before our eyes and it’s only natural for all of us to feel and express our emotions appropriately. There have been many issues pertaining to intervention which have been discussed amongst us all. There is no doubt in my mind that the right decision was made, to let nature take it’s course. By the way, that doesn’t equate to heartless, on the contrary, nobody feels worse about this then the apparent decision makers. I say apparent, because when all was said and done, and all the issues were properly weighed, there really weren’t any other options. It was clearly pointed out, by experts, that intervening at this stage could have spooked the whole nest to the point of losing all the young. If the little one was saved, and nursed back to health, what kind of a life would it have had, perhaps caged up in a zoo. I remember when I was younger I saw a golden eagle in captivity, caged behind a wire mesh. I could practically see it’s tears. As far as placing the little one in another nest, such a low probability of success would never have justified the possibility of spooking the nest. There’s a piece of me, however heavy hearted, that believes that perhaps it is better to be born free and die free. We mourn for the little one as we marvel at the wonders of nature.

Reprinted with the permission of John W. Fitzpatrick, Executive Director of the Cornell Lab of Ornithology.

Hello Paul,

Thanks for your query, and you have my admiration for persevering. We know very well how tough your job is, including dealing with an anxious public.

Our policy with our Bird Cams project is essentially “just say no” to pleas for interference. The behavior you are witnessing – while seemingly cruel and heartless to us – is natural for many kinds of birds, especially those that feed on variable, unpredictable food supplies. The little nestling does have a chance to survive, but if it does not then that result was “meant to be” by the nature of Osprey breeding strategy. The wonderful things about these nest cameras also sometimes yield the difficult things for us to watch. As you might know, we actually post a “siblicide alert” on some of our cams where we suspect the possibility exists.

I’m copying your note to Charles Eldermire, project leader for our Bird Cams. He may have some additional comments, and he would be the one to ask if we might be able to use your stored files for biological analysis.

Best wishes, and good luck,

John W. Fitzpatrick

Director, Cornell Lab of Ornithology

In addition, Charles Eldermire, Bird Cams Project Leader, Cornell Lab of Ornithology Writes:

It’s also important to acknowledge that intervening can also cause problems of its own—depending on the ages of the birds in the nest, disturbing them can trigger an early fledge. We have restricted the scenarios in which we would even consider intervening to injuries or dangers that are explicitly human-derived. For example, 3 or 4 years ago we were alerted by viewers that one of the osprey chicks at the Hellgate Osprey nest was entangled in monofilament line. We consulted with our partners there (wildlife biologists, raptor researchers, raptor rehabbers) to determine if the monofilament was an issue, and if intervening was both likely to solve the issue AND not have bad effects on the other nestlings. In the end, a quick trip to the nest was scheduled via a bucket truck, the monofilament was removed, and the nestlings all eventually fledged. In that case, all of the permits were already in hand to be studying the ospreys, and we had already discussed how to approach issues in the nest.

Good luck to the young one—hope it all turns out well.


Charles Eldermire
Bird Cams Project Leader
Cornell Lab of Ornithology


I’ve been to your site—great cam! And I noticed the runt in the nest. This is just normal Osprey reproduction. It happens all the time and you should not intervene. It’s tough to watch, but it’s how nature works. Ospreys almost always lay 3 eggs and on average fledge between 1 and 1.5 young each year. They stagger the hatch so there is a spread of ages in the young. That way, if food is short, the first-hatched (and therefore largest) will get enough food to survive while the smaller nest mates do not. If all three young were the same size and there was only enough food for 1 young, none of the young would get enough food and they would all die. If there’s lots of food, the smallest will eventually get fed and can survive. These nest cams can show some gut-wrenching scenes. The most infamous perhaps was one of the very first Osprey cams (on Long Island somewhere), where the smallest young died. One of the adults carried it out of the nest and after several minutes flew back into the nest and fed it to the other young. Waste-not-want-not at its goriest. At Hog Island up in Maine just last week a Bald Eagle came in and took the young out of the nest. Last year at another nest, cameras documented a Great-horned Owl taking young Ospreys out of a nest in NJ or MD. All of these things have been going on for millions of years and Ospreys are doing fine.

Rob Bierregaard
Academy of Natural Sciences
Drexel University

“Interesting. They don’t often take over osprey poles—probably too small for them. They will coopt tree nests, which they can expand. We had a pair of eagles do this on the Vineyard. They built up the Osprey nest a lot and then the Ospreys came home and drove the eagles away, in a David v. Goliath story. The Ospreys successfully bred. They looked tiny in the nest, which sadly blew down this winter.”

    Leave A Comment


    1. Jo-Ann June 8, 2016 at 10:17 am - Reply

      June 8 @ 10:30 a,m, (EST) Feeding at about 9:30 seemed to be going well for baby#3 I am sure I saw Gracie feeding it. Of course babies 1 and 2 got most of the food and the pieces Gracie was giving to baby 3 were much to big so I don’t know how much baby 3 did get but Gracie was feeding it. I didn’t see any agression towards baby 3 from the others. Lets hope it stays that way

    2. kathy B June 8, 2016 at 9:45 am - Reply

      9:42 am…..second fish in like an hour Way to go…they are not even hungry. I have seen no bonking yet and hoping it stays that way with plenty to feed these babies. Lil’ guy was right up front this time too. Prayers for 3 healthy, strong chicks. No fighting guys! 🙂

    3. Bonnie June 8, 2016 at 9:41 am - Reply

      Wow just watched mom feed all 3 babies. She makes sure all of them get some food.

    4. Jara June 8, 2016 at 9:28 am - Reply

      9:10 Eastern Time. At 8:00 this morning, I went back to see what I missed overnight. FINALLY, about 6:00 Gracie kept looking down and then pulled the egg closer to her. About a minute later she got up as if to check the egg. About 6:28 I saw the top of the egg shell and then at 6:37 I spotted the third bobble head. When George finally brought in a fish, Gracie got up again to feed the chicks. She actually seemed to pay special attention to #3, but the first piece of fish she gave it was bigger than its mouth. Gracie did try a couple more times to feed it after the other two were fed and fell asleep. #3 finally fell asleep and Gracie lay down and slept for a bit.

    5. Jo-Ann June 8, 2016 at 8:57 am - Reply

      June 8 @8;30 am (ET) About 7 a.m. baby #3 is visible actually emerging from the shell Gracie is on top of the babies but it is possible to see it happening. Have mixed emotions right now–happy that the third egg did produce a baby but very worried as many of us are based on what happened last year. Let us pray the food supply stays plentiful which was the major cause of the Pee-Wee incident.
      How many days apart were last years babies? Baby #3 is about 4 1/2 days younger than baby#1.What was the timeframe between Baby 1 and baby 3 last year? I guess we will see how the feeding of this third baby goes as soon as it’s feeding time. Some comments already stated they saw some aggression between the 2 babies for food in the last few days so let’s hope baby 3 gets included in feedings Baby 1 and baby 2 are only 1 day apart so baby 2 seems to be getting fed equally as much as baby 1 is by Gracie.
      There is a piece of plastic really annoying Gracie the wind keeps blowing it right in her face. Hope the wind direction changes and it becomes lodged on a branch away from her.

      • CarolV June 8, 2016 at 9:47 pm - Reply

        I just looked that up”…Last year’s hatches…6/12 @ about 8am, 6/13@about 6:30am & 6/15@ about 3pm…So we’re 9 days or so ahead of last year( I figured it out backwards first and thought 2 weeks.) I think last spring was warmer, adding to the problems that caused the bunker die-off. Hoping for no repeat of last year’s catastrophe…..Peewee always seemed small to me, but I didn’t start watching till around 6/23 or so…”Trey” seems fairly good sized…Anyone remember if Peewee was always small? Or did the disparity occur from the feeding issues?

    6. B.Sudnick June 8, 2016 at 8:55 am - Reply

      Watched the third chick being fed. First try was too large a piece of fish. This poor little one did not get much to eat. Mom was too far and had to reach over other two. Hope it survives and thrives.

    7. june c June 8, 2016 at 8:46 am - Reply

      WELCOME CHICK 3..lets all have positive thinking he will be a strong little guy!!!!

    8. Ospreylover June 8, 2016 at 8:42 am - Reply

      Welcome chick #3!

    9. Helen June 8, 2016 at 8:38 am - Reply

      Yay!! Number 3!!!!!

    10. Gordon June 8, 2016 at 8:34 am - Reply

      8 June 08.28 – There IS a third chick!

    11. isobel June 8, 2016 at 8:33 am - Reply

      We have 3 chicks now.I do hope George and Gracie look after the latest arrival better than last year and siblings are kinder. Good luck little ones.

    12. Kathy B June 8, 2016 at 8:32 am - Reply

      Last baby hatched between 7:30 and 8:30 am. Gracie just got up a few minutes ago and there it was. Feeding breakfast now.

    13. Scott June 8, 2016 at 8:31 am - Reply


      • Dawn June 8, 2016 at 9:53 am - Reply

        That should definitely be his name!

    14. Leanne June 8, 2016 at 8:28 am - Reply

      June 08- 8:27 am-

      • Elizabeth June 8, 2016 at 10:23 am - Reply

        Sending good vibes for #3.

    15. Wendy June 8, 2016 at 8:24 am - Reply

      At 8:19 looks like we have a third. Uh oh.

    16. Laura June 8, 2016 at 8:17 am - Reply

      At 04:24:45 am Gracie stands up and although it is still quite dark out, there are clearly 2 chicks and 1 egg. At 8:05 am, there is an empty half egg shell and what appears to be a third chick! George needs to start putting in some overtime now! Hope they can even up the playing field!!

    17. sundeck June 8, 2016 at 8:13 am - Reply

      egg three has hatched 8:12a.m.

    18. JP(K) June 8, 2016 at 8:11 am - Reply

      6:49am Looks like we have chick number three… Hope Georges hunting skills are up to the task this year….

    19. Liz B June 8, 2016 at 8:09 am - Reply

      6-08-2016 6:38 am EDT Saw baby no. 3 in nest with remains of shell. Mom keeping them well covered and warm. Lets hope we get 3 to end of season this year. Haven’t seen any breakfast come in as of 8 am but could have missed it/

    20. Rjoneal June 8, 2016 at 8:01 am - Reply

      Well sorry to say that we have baby number three ! ? I guess all we can do now is think positive let’s hope for plenty of fish and not a lot of fighting. Welcome to the world number three I hope you’re strong. Who knows maybe Gracie will make sure to number three gets plenty of food to survive.

    21. Sheila June 8, 2016 at 8:01 am - Reply

      At 7:55AM Gracie is eating some of the 3rd egg shell half and black plastic remains an obstacle as the wind has moved it precariously close to the little ones. I do hope George assists with some removal and the delivery of more soft detritus.

    22. Laura June 8, 2016 at 7:48 am - Reply

      June 8, 7:45 am and still no breakfast. Come on George, lets get to it!! .

    23. Sheila June 8, 2016 at 7:25 am - Reply

      It appears a new 3rd little has hatched in the 6-7AM view. That black plastic bag is curtailing Gracies attempts to soften the nest surroundings as she attempts to replace soft materials around the edges of her little ones. (Another example of the harm caused by plastic being discarded so carelessly. The egg remnants appeared to be half an empty egg and a little scrawny baby bobblehead. THis is truly a lovely sight to behold.

    24. CarolV June 8, 2016 at 7:23 am - Reply

      6:56am Clearest view of #3 as Gracie rearranges herself.

      LynD you were really guessing b’day for #3, right?

      • CarolV June 8, 2016 at 7:33 am - Reply

        7:30am The way Gracie is lying, she is getting slapped in face by flapping plastic..”aawww com’on !!! I just got comfortable!”

    25. Leanne June 8, 2016 at 7:09 am - Reply

      June 08- 7:08 am- First video was of the chick still half in shell. This video shows the chick out of shell and balled up under Gracie. 🙂 🙂 🙂

    26. Leanne June 8, 2016 at 6:55 am - Reply

      June 08- 6:54 am- I was beginning to wonder why there hadn’t been any breakfast yet this morning and I think I know why!! 🙂 🙂 🙂

    27. Betsy June 8, 2016 at 6:46 am - Reply

      6:35 am: First view of chick #3. Hello, third little bobble head. Welcome to the world.

      • Betsy June 8, 2016 at 7:12 am - Reply

        I should change that to first clear view of chick at 6:35 am!! At 6:04 am, Gracie partially stood up and rolled the egg and you could see a big ol’ crack … at 6:17 am, she stood up and moved a partial shell, but the view wasn’t clear and all you could see was white as she picked it up — only in retrospect could you see that the chick was here!!

    28. CarolV June 8, 2016 at 6:44 am - Reply

      6:31am 6/8 George has been in and out several times since about 4:45…Gracie hasn.t stood up fully. You can hear him calling from the perch, so he’s hanging close. It is a chilly
      morning and we had rain overnight. It’s supposedly 61 but feels cooler. Mid 60s today with a chance of rain in afternoon

      6:35am Gracie stood up slightly and I saw BROKEN SHELL

    29. GinaM June 8, 2016 at 6:40 am - Reply

      6:37 AM BABY NUMBER # 3 hatches!! Welcome Baby!! BE STRONG LITTLE ONE!

    30. Gordon June 8, 2016 at 6:28 am - Reply

      8 June – 06.48 AM. There’s a broken eggshell in the nest. Can’t see any more until Gracie vacates it!

      • Gordon June 8, 2016 at 6:30 am - Reply

        Correction – 06.28 AM.

        • Gordon June 8, 2016 at 6:55 am - Reply

          Ignore previous – must be an old shell!

    31. Betsy June 8, 2016 at 5:47 am - Reply

      At 4:42 am, George flew in and stood at the front of the nest for a few minutes, mostly balanced on his left leg, while Gracie stayed prone on the nest cup, not even lifting her head until just as he flew off. Immediately after he came back, at 5:01 am, the nest was raked by another osprey which flew from over the water, setting off the Georges’ alarms. Things quickly quieted down and George left at 5:04 am. Gracie went back to sleeping on and off, giving a good view that the egg was still there when she got up enough while aerating the nest bowl at 5:39 am.

    32. Rjoneal June 7, 2016 at 11:48 pm - Reply

      Betsy good job on video maybe OZ will use your video for all to see when they first come to the site.
      Of course my favorite part is George feeding Gracie.

      • Betsy June 8, 2016 at 10:09 am - Reply

        Rjoneal: That never gets old!!

        • Betsy June 8, 2016 at 5:18 pm - Reply

          I forgot to say thank you, Rjoneal!! 🙂

    33. Rjoneal June 7, 2016 at 11:39 pm - Reply

      Paul and OZ thank you for giving us an update about the comment posts. I will be happy with anything you offer us. ? We are so lucky that you and others decided to start this little project of the Live cam view of the ospreys, mainly George and Gracie of course. Osprey zone with the beautiful scenery behind it has been part of my life ever since it started. Who knew it was gonna be so successful and now it’s a big project. You have made so many people not only aware of our ?ospreys but aware of what we do to our environment and how it affects nature. You have taught us a lot about survival in nature whether it be beautiful or cruel.
      You have given free 24/7 live education on nature to so many people, families, children and grandchildren that alone is a great success. Not to mention last season we had two successful birds that fledged from the nest for the first time that’s pretty incredible. Disaster always seems to hit several osprey nest throughout the year so glad we only lost one last year and had more success than failures.
      We are all behind you keep us updated God bless!

    34. Bre June 7, 2016 at 9:30 pm - Reply

      lol rarely does Gracie bring fish to feed George while sitting on babes would be cute tho 😉

    35. CarolV June 7, 2016 at 9:28 pm - Reply

      BTW..was anyone keeping track of egg lay order. They all looked too similar to me. Was the remaining egg the third laid? Could anyone tell them apart?

      • CarolV June 7, 2016 at 9:29 pm - Reply

        And were #1 and #2 the order their eggs were laid?

      • Betsy June 8, 2016 at 5:16 pm - Reply

        I asked that the other day … NO, I did not really keep track 😀 (I know what you were thinking!! :D) I thought I knew, but then I wasn’t sure anymore!! 😀

    36. CarolV June 7, 2016 at 9:13 pm - Reply

      Just as a point..@CC cam,,,Audrey had disappeared for 24 hours..Tom did his best to sit on the eggs, but there was a long span of time when the eggs were uncovered in wet, cold weather. They made osprey record keeping history when the eggs hatched. It wasn’t thought possible that eggs could survive under those conditions.
      So the fact that Gracie has been less than diligent about sitting on the remaining egg in this warm weather may not make a difference…….I just would rather skip a 3rd chick than have it hatch after this time span…….Peewee still lives on in memory…..But we don’t get to vote

    37. Bre June 7, 2016 at 9:11 pm - Reply

      Nice discription in detail says it all rjonel & great video Betsy we all appreciate!

    38. Bre June 7, 2016 at 9:09 pm - Reply

      Feeling tension…lets please leave last egg to mother nature.., & for identifying Parents, if pple watch they can see who is motherly and who is fatherly common!

    39. Donna June 7, 2016 at 7:49 pm - Reply

      Kids get a nice feeding from mom about 7:30 pm EST. Hurry up #3!

    40. GinaM June 7, 2016 at 7:43 pm - Reply

      All the weebles seem to have wobbled back on their two talons again…

      Another nice dinner delivered by George. I love to see how these two have matured into such spectacular parents. Last year, we were wondering if George would ever get his act together- this year he is an engaged dad who is an awesome provider who dotes on his family. He is also a fierce protector- which he did a lot of today.

      The other day I saw a crack in the third egg. I have been pretty good at spotting them. Nothing has happened yet. I am wondering if there may be something wrong or like in the Fort Myers nest, the third egg won’t hatch at all. If it is going to hatch- it better do so quickly.

      I love all the videos this year that you all have been putting up!

    41. Laura June 7, 2016 at 7:27 pm - Reply

      And thankfully our baby chick has been returned to his upright position!! 🙂

    42. CarolV June 7, 2016 at 7:07 pm - Reply

      Saw comments before checking video, so was happy to scroll back and find two upright chicks ! They may get tired and rest, but they manage to get up eventually..

    43. kathy B June 7, 2016 at 6:43 pm - Reply

      6:42 pm…Gracie got up and baby ok. right side up. Yea.

    44. Marilyn June 7, 2016 at 5:15 pm - Reply

      is that little one still on its back?

    45. Pattie H June 7, 2016 at 4:48 pm - Reply

      I sure hope that chick and get himself back upright ugh

    46. Susan L June 7, 2016 at 4:44 pm - Reply

      4:40 One baby was on its back unable to right itself perhaps for half an hour. Gracie righted the baby and snuggled over the group, then continued to let George feed her so carefully. What insight!

    47. Leanne June 7, 2016 at 4:33 pm - Reply

      June 07- 4:32 pm- I sure hope that chick rights it’s self soon. He/She’s been on his/her back for 20 minutes.

    48. Denise June 7, 2016 at 4:32 pm - Reply

      One of the chicks fell over about 5 minutes ago & can’t turn over. I hope Gracie helps the poor little guy.

    49. Roberta June 7, 2016 at 4:28 pm - Reply

      At a little after 4pm I saw one of the hatchlings flipped over on its back . Struggled for a while to right itself, to no avail. Gracie did come over to it & removed some of the nesting material from around the hatchling. Still not able to get right side up & seems to have given up. Was hoping Gracie would lift it with her beak, but so far no. Doesn’t look good. Going back to watch.

      • twinsmom June 7, 2016 at 6:59 pm - Reply

        Did the little chick ever get turned over?

    50. John Fischetti June 7, 2016 at 4:23 pm - Reply

      4:17pm Baby fell on it’s back and Gracie had issues getting it back upright.

      • Leanne June 7, 2016 at 4:28 pm - Reply

        June 07- 4:27 pm- Best Video I’ve Seen. Great Job, Betsy 🙂

        • Betsy June 7, 2016 at 6:03 pm - Reply

          Thanks, Leanne! OMG, every time I make a video, I learn more and more!! 😀 By the time G&G&Cx2 are gone, I’ll be a pro!! (I don’t know, though, that I want to go back and redo all the others!!) 😀 😀 I better make a third one 😀

          • Betsy June 8, 2016 at 5:08 pm - Reply

            I’m gonna think positive … G&G&Cx3 are gone!!

      • Renee June 7, 2016 at 4:43 pm - Reply

        As a newbie to this Osprey nest this video is a great help in telling the difference between them..thank you!

      • Marilyn June 7, 2016 at 5:17 pm - Reply

        Terrific video! Thanks for making it!

      • Margaret June 7, 2016 at 5:23 pm - Reply

        Fabulous job Betsy… Thanks

      • Candi June 7, 2016 at 5:37 pm - Reply

        great video ty

      • CarolV June 7, 2016 at 7:04 pm - Reply

        , O Wise Woman,,,show and tell so much better than words..HOPE THIS GETS ADDED TO HIGHLIGHTS !!!!!!

        • CarolV June 7, 2016 at 7:09 pm - Reply

          I wasn’t yelling, just tryna get noticed….

      • JP June 7, 2016 at 9:35 pm - Reply

        Magnificent both. Thank you for doing this.

      • helen June 7, 2016 at 10:45 pm - Reply

        Thanks Betsy – very cool

      • Suzie June 7, 2016 at 10:56 pm - Reply

        Thank you Betsy for the video. I was having trouble telling them apart. Now that we can tell them apart we can concentrate on telling the little ones apart.

      • Elizabeth June 8, 2016 at 10:17 am - Reply

        Thanks Betsy for taking the time to do this for us.

      • Wendy June 9, 2016 at 1:00 pm - Reply

        That was great! Thanks

    51. June c June 7, 2016 at 3:25 pm - Reply

      I had such high hopes for yesterday for egg to hatch. Even this morning got up extra early to see. If it does he/she better be strong. We all don’t want to see a repeat of last year..

      • Ospreylover June 8, 2016 at 8:49 am - Reply

        Looks like a strong one! He’s eating already

    52. Leanne June 7, 2016 at 3:02 pm - Reply

      June 07- 3 pm- At about 2:26 George came in with a live fish. Gracie fed the chicks, who seemed to eat well, and she even managed to get a snack in for herself. George flew off with the remainder of the fish and Gracie is now sitting just behind the chicks offering them shade. 🙂

    53. Rjoneal June 7, 2016 at 2:49 pm - Reply

      Gale here are all my notes on all the awesome description From many different osprey zone members of George and Gracie apart I hope this helps you.

      First of all the easiest thing to spot is Gracie’s head looks like it has a heart shape Blackfeather on top looking down and you can spot Gracies black dot under her wing right away.

      The markings on the front of George’s head looks like, to me, sort of like looking down on a deformed frog (or a like a shield), while Gracie’s is narrower and more cone-shaped with raggedy edges at the wide end. The markings on the back of George’s head looks like, as I read once somewhere in the comments and aptly describes, an osprey; and Gracie has a dash, then an equal sign (– =) behind the cone, followed by a more rectangular fringe-like patch on the back of hers. On George, there is a mark halfway up in the center of the inside of each his wings, which Gracie doesn’t have. Both have speckles on their chest, but Gracie has more and they’re darker; George’s tail is darker. Gracie is more rumpled looking. PLUS, if you haven’t noticed, Gracie is nearly always, to be kind, chattering!!
      The easiest way to tell Gracie and George apart, I think, is that Gracie’s feathers look more “patchy” and “unkempt” than George’s. Also Gracie has many different colored feathers as George only has a couple shades.

      Larger ”shield”-shaped marking on front of top of head and “osprey” shape on back of head
      Dark mark halfway up in the center of the inside of each his wings
      Smooth dark wing and tail feathers
      Smaller and more tapered

      Narrower ”cone”-shaped marking on front of top of head, followed by rectangular shape on back of head
      Dark mark on right side of chest (sort of heart-shaped) but not on left
      ”Patchy” looking wing and tail feathers
      Larger and more boxy-shaped
      Their eye stripes are different, but these are finer points.

    54. CarolV June 7, 2016 at 2:35 pm - Reply

      2:26pmEDT INCOMING !! Very lively fish delivered by George..when Gracie takes it by the chicks, it’s tail is flapping right next to them…mercifully quickly put out of its misery…..

      • CarolV June 7, 2016 at 2:45 pm - Reply

        She offered big gill cover to one, took back, tried gain, then realized it was a round peg in a tiny hole..threw aside….The pippers are getting good at holding head up to be better targets for was even scooting forward a little…Gracie decided to go work on that gill cover again, even tho there is still HUGE fish left….she’s whittling it down and offering smaller pieces to the chicks…waste not, want not..or maybe high nutritional value?

    55. CarolV June 7, 2016 at 1:55 pm - Reply

      1:52pm Gracie was picking something off one of the chicks..amazing to see that big hooked beak so tenderly working on the chick’s tiny wing…and she’s not even bothering to cover that egg….

      • CarolV June 7, 2016 at 1:58 pm - Reply

        Although, the chicks are usually draped over it…
        George just flew in to the perch…nice view of his entry

    56. CarolV June 7, 2016 at 1:40 pm - Reply

      1:30pm GALE Just realized, good place to start learning to ID is the highlight videos. June 19,2015 is a good view…Gracie is the noisy one, George incoming with fish. You can see a good view of his head to compare to Gracie. If you think this is hard, wait til chicks grow and we try to keep THEM straight !!!!!!

      • CarolV June 7, 2016 at 1:46 pm - Reply

        Note: Highlights 2014…May not be this Gracie….was a first year for the nest and female looks different; but enjoyable to watch to witness sheer freedom….
        There are highlights lined up on right side of title page as well as clicking on HIGHLIGHTS at top of page, where there are more

    57. Marlene June 7, 2016 at 1:28 pm - Reply

      I, too, am hoping that the third egg doesn’t hatch. Gracie has definitely not been attentive to it, as she was with the other two while we waited for them to make an appearance. Also, it’s amazing how they always entirely eat any fish they catch. There is never any left over, from what I’ve seen. And I get a kick out of George, who usually eats the tail. He takes that last bite and I think, “Good to the last tail.”

    58. Marlene June 7, 2016 at 1:21 pm - Reply

      Around 11:00 a.m., Gracie left George in charge of the young ones for about an hour. He had a hard time making one of the chicks stay under him when he was nesting, so he got up and just watched them while she was exercising. Sometimes I thought he was thinking, “When is that wife of mine going to return?”

    59. CarolV June 7, 2016 at 10:33 am - Reply

      10:30am GALE..left a quick description @ your 8:55am post. I’m sure others will answer also, so you should get plenty of info to help you ID the G’s.

      BETSY…thanks for the video !!! Nothing cuter than babies fighting sleep, no matter what the species !

      • CarolV June 7, 2016 at 10:43 am - Reply

        It’s funny, but the fish was in the nest and Gracie wasn’t interested. George came in @10:34 and started feeding Gracie, who switched position so she could feed the kids…

      • Betsy June 7, 2016 at 4:29 pm - Reply

        Was it the right time frame? I guess it doesn’t really matter, they’re ALWAYS so cute to watch … that’s why there’s a bonus video 😀

    60. Leanne June 7, 2016 at 10:22 am - Reply

      June 07-10:22- At 10:08- Snack time! And another intruder alert a few minutes after that.

    61. Betsy June 7, 2016 at 9:58 am - Reply

      For Carol – your chicks (and for everyone else who also loves watching Gracie feed the chicks and then George feed Gracie).

    62. Leanne June 7, 2016 at 9:52 am - Reply

      June 07- 9:50 am- At about 9:36 George brings in a headless fish. While George and Gracie are standing on side of nest an intruder flies just a little too close. Gracie and George alarm and George flaps his wings and jumps up a little before flying off . He returned to the perch a few seconds later. Gracie fed chicks a nice snack and they ended up falling asleep.

    63. CarolV June 7, 2016 at 9:49 am - Reply

      9:36amEDT George arrives with a headless fish.Gracie takes control of it. As she is standing on left side of nest, with George next her, an Intruder flies overhead. Both birds alarm and George goes after it. Gracie doing great job feeding chicks…Each getting a share

      My cat, Steve, is patting Gracie on the screen. Mighty hunter mighty confused !

      • CarolV June 7, 2016 at 10:11 am - Reply

        9:57am Gracie was sitting on side of nest, grooming, til she took off for some exercise…..chicks are getting some air….she’s back in 2 mins. or less…and out again….and back shortly, followed by George, who finds the fish.
        The video jumping and pausing….
        The chicks are aware eating is happening, as they wake up. begging…Gracie takes over the fish and tears off a piece and hands it to George He bends to feed chick, but all the pausing makes it hard to see if the chick actually gets it. George floats upward and Gracie feeds the kids…

    64. Dawn June 7, 2016 at 9:38 am - Reply

      Anyone else thinking Egg #3 may not be viable at this point?

      • Leanne June 7, 2016 at 10:03 am - Reply

        June 07- 10:01 am- I’m thinking that too. Kind of hoping it isn’t only because I don’t want a repeat of last year. That was just too heartbreaking. 🙁

        • CarolV June 7, 2016 at 10:36 am - Reply

          I’m with you on I mentioned, Gracie hasn’t been rolling it as she did before hatching started. I don’t know if that’s significant or not

      • Laura June 7, 2016 at 10:24 am - Reply

        Although it is only day 37 for that egg, Gracie is busy feeding the other chicks and not providing enough wormth and humidity so I’m am thinking that this egg may not hatch at all. Even if it does, the poor little guy will be so far behind the other two he won’t stand a chance competing for food! It is my belief that the three eggs is natures way to insure that at least one chick survives.

      • Elaine June 7, 2016 at 2:08 pm - Reply

        I am thinking the same thing that egg #3 may not be viable.

    65. Roberta June 7, 2016 at 9:13 am - Reply

      I’m thinking that the 3rd egg might not hatch at all. And that might not be a bad thing, given that the other 2 would be much stronger & better at the feeding process.

      • Marilyn June 7, 2016 at 2:38 pm - Reply

        I agree. I’d rather not see it born than go through what we witnessed last year. With just 2, they both will survive & thrive.

    66. Ron June 7, 2016 at 9:04 am - Reply

      Looks like number 3 is in this world. How cute. Hope it survives.

    67. Gale June 7, 2016 at 8:55 am - Reply

      Can someone please tell me how to tell the difference between George and Gracie?

      • CarolV June 7, 2016 at 10:23 am - Reply

        Gracie is the one spending most of the time sitting in the nest. She looks more rumpled right now. George is the one bringing in the fish. He looks sleeker. If you can study the markings on their heads,,,Gracie has a small arrow head of dark feathers pointing to her beak..there is a white area below that ( we’re on the back of her neck) than scattered dark feathers along the ruff where it joins the darker part of her back……George has the dark arrow, then a larger long arrow running from a narrow point to a broader base where his ruff meets his body..there are subtle differences to their faces and chests, too, which you will pick up by watching them. Start with Gracie, she’s in view most.

        • Gale June 7, 2016 at 1:35 pm - Reply

          Thank you CarolV and all that gave me marking descriptions.

      • Ronetta Mills June 7, 2016 at 11:40 am - Reply

        Gracie has more white in her feathers and she is bigger than George. He is darker and his markings are more distinct against the white.

      • Leanne June 7, 2016 at 11:55 am - Reply

        June 07- 11:53 am- Gracie also has a black spot on her side, under her right wing. Her legs are also whiter than George’s. George has some brown on his. 🙂

      • barbara June 7, 2016 at 12:52 pm - Reply

        Gracie is lighter

      • Lady Di June 7, 2016 at 1:07 pm - Reply

        In addition to what Carol mentioned, Gracie also has a dark spot under her right wing.

      • Deborah June 7, 2016 at 2:07 pm - Reply

        Gracie also has 2 eyebrows (lines) above her eyes.

    68. isobel June 7, 2016 at 8:16 am - Reply

      8am Gracie having very intense preening session. Still just 2 babies.

    69. Leanne June 7, 2016 at 7:45 am - Reply

      June 07- 7:43 am- George started to feed Gracie at about 7:27. He fed her for a good 10-12 minutes while she was on chicks/egg. She got up to stretch, or whatever, and just as she did George started to call his alarm. Gracie also joined in so I guess the intruder is near by.

    70. june c June 7, 2016 at 7:44 am - Reply

      7:13 intruder fly by…come on egg HATCH…worry now he/she will be a runt…

    71. Leanne June 7, 2016 at 7:18 am - Reply

      June 07- 7:16 am- At 7:13 Intruder flies directly at and in front of nest. Gracie and George sounding alarms the entire time.

    72. Leanne June 7, 2016 at 6:46 am - Reply

      June 07- 6:44 am- At about 6:32 Gracie gave the chicks a nice snack from the remains of the breakfast fish. She also managed to eat a bit before snuggling in on chicks/egg. 🙂

    73. CarolV June 7, 2016 at 6:40 am - Reply

      6:30am George brings back leftovers, which Gracie asks for politely. Feeds the fighting two some more. They are having wrestling matches and some pecking sessions already. Where are you #3? Maybe nobody home in that egg. I haven’t seen Gracie worrying about rolling it.

      • Leanne June 7, 2016 at 9:59 am - Reply

        June 07- 9:57 am- I saw some definite sibling rivalry going on too. Not much but some. I’m also wondering about the 3rd egg and have noticed she doesnt seem to really tend to it. Maybe it wont ever hatch?

    74. Leanne June 7, 2016 at 6:12 am - Reply

      June 07- 6:11 am- At about 5:40 George delivered breakfast. Gracie fed the chicks (still only 2)

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