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Bald Eagles Visit Nest
Ospreyzone Highlights: May 21-29, 2020
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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
George and Gracie's First Baby
Eggs Over Easy
Changing of the Guard
Breakfast is Served
Let's Hang Out
Hard to Get
Dinner is Served
OspreyZone Highlights: George Returns
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Special Thanks to Tommy and Christina: George & Gracie’s Landlords
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.
IMPORTANT: Messages from osprey experts
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.
Paul 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.
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
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.
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.
Academy of Natural Sciences
I’ve been wondering… with love comes heartache……. would I want to track our family? Would I rather wonder and assume everyone is ok or would I want to know if something happened to one of them… honestly I do not know which I would prefer. Truth is usually best,……. but always?
the camera has been freaking out a bit but it sure looks peaceful over our nest………. the lights reflecting on the water are mesmerizing…….a beautiful view…. I was half expecting Sandy to build up the sides, throw in more soft grasses and spend the winter huddled in under any heat the camera my be putting out……. We could ask to install a heat lamp…..:)
I haven’t commented in a few weeks but have been reading the comments of others almost daily. I started a major remodeling of my house which has become a nightmare. I wish George and Gracie were here to give me advise since they did such a great job of building their nest and remodeled it often as they thought necessary. Even if their choice of building materials was not always in their best interest like the plastic bags fishing line and windshield wipers. All these man made hazards that caused so much danger to our osprey family and as we know a least one other unfortunate osprey this season alone that die because of fishing line.
It had been suggested by some that we get together for a social event of some kind which is a great idea. May I suggest that those of us that can get together in late March or early April to do a beach clean up somewhere out on the east end of the island and then go out to eat. It isn’t possible to know where George and Gracie get there building materials but I am sure that wherever we do the clean up will be beneficial to some type of wildlife or marine life in general. Paul, Tommy or anyone living in that area can suggest a beach where we could do that clean up. Don’t know how we can coordinate this event unless this site is up and running at that time. Anyone have suggestions about this?
So sad to read about North Fork Bob. It makes me worry about the safety of our osprey family and all migrating wildlife. It is a dangerous journey. We have to wait till spring and pray for the safe return of George and Gracie and pray that Ronnie and Sandy also made the journey safely. That is a question that we will never have an answer to unless Sandy returns in the future and visits Tommy to say “Hello, I’m back” like she did to say “Thank you” before she left.
Le’s keep in touch and if I survive this renovation maybe I will be seeing some of you in the spring. Hoping for a mild and relatively snowless winter yet the predictions are for the opposite yet we have something to look forward to in the spring. George and Gracie returning and maybe a gathering of us to do that event.
Karin, thank you for the kind words.
I am reading “Return of the Osprey” by David Gessner right now and there is a wonderful section in there about ospreys remembering where they are from.
In the book, the author interviews an osprey expert and is marveling at how these young birds make the trips they do. The expert replies, I am paraphrasing because it is not in front of me now, that the birds we see as babies – like Ronnie and Sandy- are really teenagers. He compares it to when we are in our teens, imagine if we could fly around and explore. We would! And he continues that ospreys somehow memorize the land surrounding their nest and they remember it as their home.
George and Gracie will come back here in the Spring. They were probably born in the same area as the nest. Ronnie and Sandy will find their ways “home”, too, in a couple of years. And I can’t help but think that we will most definitely KNOW them. I don’t know how, but how could we not?
If Tommy and Paul keep the camera rolling I can just see a bossy female landing on the Gracie’s nest. Gracie will flip out thinking she is a VF, but once we hear her first yell, even Gracie will say to herself- Oh dear, that sounds like Sandy! 🙂
Just some warm musings on a day that we are so sad for Bob.
If you watch All Things Great and Small, the old PBS series based on the stories of James Herriot, the rural UK veterinarian, they had a lovely episode this week. It dealt with the loss of a beloved horse. Its owner, keeping a stiff upper lip, decides to remember how wonderful the horse was and what promise his other jumpers have. So much so that he is planning their victories into the future years. He turns to Dr. Herriot and says, “I choose a bright morning.”
I am so very excited for that bright, sunny morning when we turn on Osprey zone and see a skinny George land with a new windshield wiper in preparation for Gracie’s return. According to Rob Bierregaard, we only have to wait until St. Paddy’s day. That ‘s not so far away. We can make it!!
NF Bob – I went to Rob Bierregaard’s Twitter page and found( I believe) the obit that was on Ospreytrax.com His Twitter page is very good and worth viewing. Here is the obit: from Bob Bierregaard. So sad!
RIP North Fork Bob. Sadly our suspicions were correct. Bob died in central Florida. Amazingly, within 7 hours of my realizing he was not moving, with the help of Barb Walker over in Tampa Bay, Google Earth, and our cell phones, Reinier Munguia from the Lake Region Audubon Society found what the coyotes had left of Long Island’s favorite Osprey. Bob probably got to the area (a big cattle farm) on the evening of the 7th. His signals never moved after that. We’ll never know what happened to him, but it might have been an encounter with a Bald Eagle–there’s a pair near where he died, and Reinier reports that the Audubon Center for Birds of Prey receives quite a few Ospreys injured after encounters with Bald Eagles. Alternatively, it might have been our “usual suspect” in these “death by woodlot” events–a Great-horned Owl. Bummer.
I can’t shake the NF Bob loss – he was a wonderful, unusual and friendly bird.
Don’t know if I can go on with this – it is really emotionally draining.
I told the local newspaper about it Wednesday and they ran a special story. They did their homework after learning about it and they had complete information. The comments in response were extremely emotional – he had a lot of followers.
I saw the article in The Suffolk Times and it was really nice. It’s sad that he was a late bloomer and was just establishing a nest. Just another lesson to appreciate each day. I’m typing with my 18 yr. old cat draped across my arm and chest and happy for every minute of the inconvenience…..Enjoy YOUR day, everyone…..
Just added another cat to right side. Typing is over
You too Carol.
Helen ~ Can you give us the name of the ‘local paper’ or give us the link to the article? Thanks so much!
If you do happen to clean out the best maybe you can retrieve Pee Wee’s body. It seems that we all forgot how Pee Wee a brave fight to live but lost that battle. So Tommy if you can retrieve Pee Wee’s remains maybe we can give him a fitting burial
I am not an only child but I do have an imagination……. Some have mentioned it is sad because we most likely will not recognize Ronnie and Sandy if we should happen to see them fly by…….Well,… I think we might…… Most likely they will be the young ones with tattoos and piercings and punk hair ( feather ) styles……..:) Actually, if osprey memories are long enough it would not be a surprise if she ( he ) put an abnormal effort into trying to return and stay in our nest again. If they come back in April……… We have just 6 months to go.
….. referring to George and Grace on the 6 months to go comment….. I know it will be a couple years for Ronnie and Sandy.
I wish I had something groovy to contribute. I don’t live close enough to a nice water source or out rural enough to see any wild life bigger than a hawk…. Most I get is what my bird feeders bring in….. I have EXTREMELY limited computer skills and electronical doings is men’s work. ( yes I am over the age of 50 ) I love reading everyone’s comments and observations and contributions……So many of you are lucky enough to live in areas where you can see and watch and sort of adopt osprey and eagles and they become like family…..I do envy you. Carol and Gina and everyone, I do thank you for all you do to share these wonderful things with us….:)
Sorry, Karin, also over 50(and 60) and I’m figuring out my own electronic doings…..and working on my computer skills..go on a journey with me toward improvement!
Can someone help me and detail how to see the story of NF Bob. I did go to the site recommended, but still no details.
This fine bird made 5 R/T and now all we have left is our sad hearts.
For our book-reading fans – I just borrowed another GREAT one, actually loaned from NY State Library Albany through library loan from my own Connetquot library.
Name: HAWKS ALOFT – MAURICE BROUN 1948 – THE STORY OF HAWK MOUNTAIN (Pa) An amazing story of a good Samaritan to whom much THANKS is due.
The second book I am starting to read is much more scientific and a book that David Gessner referred to in his own writings about Ospreys. It is too detailed for me and I just scan pages until I come to something that catches my interest. Name: Ospreys, a natural and unnatural history by Alan F. Poole
I appreciate your computer help – not savvy on this machine. Rodee H.
NF Bob – I couldn’t find the posting on Osprytrax, but here is a link to The Suffolk Times news article about NF Bob
Nancy, thanks for posting the link to NF Bob. So sad to learn about his demise.
What is the link to the story about NF Bob? I couldn’t find it on the web site. Thank you.
so sorry about Bob the Osprey. I was devastated when an eagle took the babies from the nest in Maine. Does anyone know what happened for sure to Bob? 🙁 Take care all. I sure miss those birds
Hi…in case you can’t find the story…it seems he was probably attacked by an eagle..very territorial especially since they are in nesting mode in Florida, where the incident happened. It is believed that Bob was injured and knocked to the ground, where possible land predators finished him off. Some evidence of him was found by searchers, including the wing that carried his tracking device. Rest in peace, Bob. You have taught us all so much……….
How big of a pita would it be to ask the fishing and wildlife people to request the owners of fishing sites and camping and picnic sites to put up signs with a picture of a feathered friend and a caption saying police your fishing lines or trash kills or something of that nature? The best we can do would be like someone said,…. if you see something tossed on the ground or at the water’s edge, save a life, pick it up and put it in the trash somewhere safe.
Gruesome as it sounds, the picture should be Ronnie caught in line or even a poor bird who lost its life hung up in line.
To friends at Ospreyzone. the male known as NF Bob, who was a tracked male for 5 years for Rob B. @ospreytrax.com, was lost recently. His story is on ospreytrax.com….It is so sad that a bird that was just becoming known to so many as a personality in his own right is gone so quickly.
Good thoughts and a happier day to everyone. Glad to see some are keeping in touch….
I have been following him and noted on MoveBank that there was no activity since 10/10. Have been looking on Ospreytrax but I cannot find anything current on him. Can you tell me where you found that? Am really sad over it.
Yes I found it. Devastated.
How sad. With all that these birds have to contend with, it’s a wonder that so many of them survive. Makes me wonder where the members of our little family are now.
I went to OspreyTrax.com but did not see any recent info on NF Bob. Where can the info about the loss be found?
Jai, the best place for the most up to date information is on his Face Book page: https://www.facebook.com/Ospreytraxcom-1592703860949409/timeline/
It’s a public site so you don’t need an account.
The news was so sad and then they believe they lost another, Juliet, who was already in SA. I was already saddened by the loss of Artoo off of Florida just a few weeks ago. It makes me glad that our family isn’t tracked and we can just think good thoughts for them.
I wanted to add another site for updates. This is the twitter account for the New Hampshire ospreys and is a part of Rob Bierregaard’s project. They provide frequent updates and you don’t need an account to check in on them.
Go under Adult individual maps for ospreys and then Adult/ New England and click on NF Bob.
I saw that too. It is so sad. Poor Bob. I pray he didn’t suffer.
That is soooo sad about Northfork Bob!!! They reported that he had just started to nest with another bird after 5 years looking. Eagles can be vicious – a young one killed Ozzie.
So sorry Carol. Especially to those that knew him from the area. I’m from Michigan and I so want to come out to LI for a summer and watch our ospreys. Guess I better head to the store and get those lotto tickets!
My sister went to that ospreytrax site, found the story and told me what happened….. That is so sad. 🙁 He must have been badly injured to not be able to get to a tree. May all our other osprey family and friends have a safe winter.
on another note it looks like Harriet the eagle has a new boyfriend…. I hope they do well……..
Hi everyone, For those who want to find North Fork Bob’s timeline go to Ospreytrax.com and click on INTERACTIVE MAPS. Select 2015, then select NEW ENGLAND- FALL. Under Updates you will find Bobs story in updates for 20 Oct 2015. If you would like to see his entire timeline click on INDIVIDUAL MAPS, on the drop down select ADULTS NEW ENGLAND, Bob will be in the list. Sad, but good to know what happened; maybe something for science will come of the loss.
Feel so sad about North Fork Bob….was hoping that maybe the transmitter had fallen off…..what a beautiful Osprey!
I found the Obit for NF Bob. How sad. It seems Eagles are just destined to cause us heartbreak this year. Hopefully, 2016 will be better .
So sorry to hear about North Fork Bob. I’ve been watching Bob all Spring and Summer and was watching Bob as he did his migration South Then on October 10 he wasn’t moving then I found out he passed away. It’s said to see but Nature is Cruel
Rest in Peace
Our nest looks so empty
and mostly lifeless too
just small birds and crows
they’re our cleaning crew
But our nest holds so much
in our mind’s eyes we see
our magnificent raptors
and each memory
of all summer long
from day one till the fall
we were glued to our screens
and absorbed it all
as they matured and they grew
getting stronger each day
till they had to fly south
’cause they could not stay
Now our nest may be empty
although our hearts are not
We hold our osprey family there
and that says a lot,
They left their summer home
literally flown the coop
we miss so much about them
except the osprey poop! 🙂
Love it, Karin! So true… so true.
Thanks Karin! I enjoyed your poem and I miss our osprey family too.
Poor Bob! I’m so sad to learn of his demise. Migration certainly has its extreme dangers. I wish they didn’t have to leave and be subjected to extreme peril. Rest in Peace North Fork Bob.
Karin ~ Your poem was EXCELLENT and HYSTERICAL. I can’t believe the talent some of our Ospreyzoners have!
Thank you for the poem. It is strange seeing it empty day after day. Hope they are ok. What an experience!
What a great poem Karin!! Missing them…
Thanks Karin – very much.
Thanks, Karin…I appreciate your ability to condense our feelings in such a lyrical way..and with humor!!! Enjoyed it….
Love it. 🙂
Tommy and Paul,
When where you going to lower the nest? Before winter or in the spring before our family returns? I was just wondering if you’d let us know. Thank you .
This is in response to GinaM long and caring message of today.
I was also thinking of the many Charter Boats on our waters. (I have been on some).
Do you suppose that Captain/Mates are fully aware what harm is done by discarting fishing lines overboard.???
Idealistic thinking is the possibility of each boat owner having a sign up or announcing this problem to their passengers as they leave the pier. It would help. RH
Thank you Rodee. I am working on doing something that will help. Signs are part of the plan.
Carol & Karin you are amazing thanx 😉
Thank you but I’m really just a normal, boring, pita person. 🙂
Miss our oprey family so much….hope they are all safe….they were such a big part of our daily life…Its like some kind of withdrawal. Wish there was a way to no they are all safe…can’t wait to spring….seems like such a long time away….gosh….I hope it goes fast !!! Please….lets all stay connected!
I think about them almost every day…. I wonder what Grace has been doing all this time…… I wonder how Ronnie is maturing… I wonder if George and Sandy have made it to their winter home ok….. I wonder how Sandy is coping without her nest……
See everyone in the Spring
To Paul Tommy and all the Experts
Is there anything we can do over the Winter to help you in developing something new for the Site. And when the Ospreys return maybe we can help any other Research Sites such as Cornell Labs with doing research and studies on the behavior of the Ospreys There are so many of us who know our Ospreys that we may help other Osprey Projects better to know the Lives of our Ospreys
The best thing we can do is help to spread the word about discarded fishing line and other debris, like helium balloons, that wind up in our waterways. So many ospreys die a terrible, long, suffering death when ensnared by fishing line. Remember how Ronnie struggled when his leg was caught and could not reach the fish Gracie was doling out?
Here, where I live, a beautiful, young male osprey caught a fish for the family, stopped on a perch to eat the head before delivering it to the babies and mom, but got caught in fishing line. He wasn’t as lucky as Ronnie. He struggled to free himself to no avail. I found him too late, hanging lifeless by his leg, with his nest 30 yards away. I found someone to help cut his body down so he wouldn’t hang there, but it tore my heart out.
Living on the water I see all sorts of things discarded on the beaches. Big, thick, tangles of fishing wire and debris are everywhere. An osprey expert told me he hears of almost 10 birds a week who get caught and don’t survive.
The point of this long answer is this: Fishermen may not know what happens when they toss fishing line overboard. They may not realize that the line they choose to use is not tough enough to reel in the fish they are after, so it breaks and stays in the water still connected to the fish. If an osprey catches that fish, it could be the last thing he ever does.
Tell people. Tell them not to send up balloons in the sky. When you are walking on the beach admiring the view, look at the sand. Do you see something that could trap an osprey or sea turtle or whale or dolphin? If you see something – do something: pick it up. Put it safely in the trash, away from the gulls who are notorious dumpster divers.
To me, this is the best thing we can do for our precious osprey and all of the marine creatures we love to watch.
I just was told a fascinating Osprey story.
This lady was fishing from a bridge here in Jacksonville Fl and a Osprey was sitting on a utility pole watching/fishing too. This lady caught a trout and was reeling it in and the Osprey went into the air and was zeroing in on her fish so she let the line out so her fish would go down deep. The Osprey went back to the pole to watch again. The lady again tried to reel in her fish and again the Osprey went into the air but this time it dove down and got her fish and was flying away with it taking her line as well. She was holding onto the pole and had to cut her line so he would take her pole too.
What a story!!!!!
I was so worried about our Family during the Hurricane on their journey South If figured righ they should have flown around the storm. Their a tough lot they are and watching them weather some bad storms out on the North Forth But all we can do is Hope and Pray that they will through the Grace of God they will be OK
So if we all say a Prayer every day that they will be Fine
That is a really cool story. It would have been thrilling to fish “with” and osprey!
I worry about fishing line. More ospreys are killed by fishing line than by anything else. Remember our Ronnie was ensnared by one in the nest? Out here we had a young adult male, like George, who got caught on a line while perching nearby his nest to eat the head off a fish before delivering it to the family and he died a terrible, agonizing death as he could not break free of the fishing line that he picked up along with the fish he caught. He hung upside down and suffered before anyone could save him.
The best thing we can do for ospreys is to ask fishermen to not discard their fishing lines in the waterways. The same goes for helium balloons. They look great when soaring up to the sky, but, eventually, they come down, and many a marine animal or bird is tangled in the string with terrible results. 🙁
Thought you might enjoy this . . .
FROM THE BOOK: Animal Wise By: Virginia Morell
Animals have minds. They have brains and use them as we do: for experiencing the world, for thinking and feeling, and for solving the problems of life every creature faces. Like us, they have personalities, moods, and emotions; they laugh, and they play. Some show grief and empathy and are self-aware and very likely conscious of their actions and intents.
Not so long ago, I would have hedged these statements, because the prevailing notion held that animals are more like zombies or robotic machines, capable of responding with only simple, reflexive behaviors. And indeed there are still researchers who insist that animals move through life like the half-dead, but those scientists have been left behind as a flood of new research from biologists, animal behaviorists, evolutionary and ecological biologists, comparative psychologists, and others sweeps away old ideas that have stymied the exploration of animal minds. The question now is not “Do animals think?” It’s “How and what do they think?”
Animals can and do think…. They absolutely use their instincts but they learn and they adapt. I watched a documentary on bears ( don’t remember what kind or where ) a couple years ago…
For some reason the salmon run was hugely delayed….. the camera caught one bear in particular eating something bears just do not eat…… this bear was trying something different and changing it’s behavior to meet its needs….. On another scale I have seen ( on a television program ) a mother gorilla mourn the death of her baby and I have seen an adult female gorilla in a zoo scoop up a very small human child and hold the child in her arms to comfort and protect the child from the other gorillas….. ( the child had fallen into the ‘ yard ‘ )
On a much smaller scale I watched a squirrel in my yard under the bird feeders pounce on a chipmunk to scare it away then watched that same chipmunk a little bit later sneak up behind and pounce right back on that same squirrel…..Rocky jumped a good 13 to 14 inches high… That was funny to watch. 🙂 One day I kept hearing a bird calling from somewhere under the bushes next to the bird feeders. I could not tell from the call what kind of a bird it was…..It sounded kinda sick to me….. But it chirped and chirped…….The birds pecking at the seeds on the ground under the feeders ignored the ‘ sick ‘ bird in the bushes …. one of them moved closer to the bushes and out sprang a cat and got him…..There was no sick bird…. it was the cat making the bird calls. That was weird.
Since I’ve been back to work after vaca, the only bird on Verizon Vic’s post has been a large seagull … they don’t sit there if he’s in the area….
Yesterday morning there was a huge racket in the woods across from me…there had to be a minimum of 50 crows (prob more) squawking for all they were worth!!! The sound would peter down to silence then one single’ whark’ would set them all off again!! A little sci-fi movie-ish but amazing to hear…wish I could have seen them!
Crossing over the wetlands on the way home from work a very large bird flew overhead. It wasn’t an osprey. I’m gonna check eagles to see what a juvenile looks like…I read they occasionally are spotted here during migration.
Just read an article about Bald eagle sightings in the Riverhead area and along the Peconic River and how they are becoming much more frequent. There was also a photo of a fledgling, which keep their mottled feathers for about 5 years before developing their iconic coloration. So I’m fairly sure that was the bird I saw while crossing the bridge over the Peconic the other day! There are only 2 nesting pairs on all of LI (one is actually on Shelter Island, a separate island between the two Forks). But they have been spotting more eagles on visits to the area. This is another success story, like the osprey, that is recovering from DDT devastation with the help of wildlife experts.
Yes there is a bald eagle on Shelter Island. It is my understanding that more are coming.
I wonder if your crows were responding to a predator bird. Many years ago there were crows carrying on for the longest time outside my house, so I finally had go out and see what the heck was going on. There were a few crows in my next door neighbor’s tree, all on different branches but facing the same way toward a tree on my property. When I got closer to see what they were all looking at, I saw there was a long-eared owl in my tree! I’d never seen an owl in the wild before — or since.
The wind is really picking up…… I wish our family was in the nest hunkering down against the wind…….. I miss them….. 🙁
Sorry for a very messed up posting before. I am just learning how to use a tablet. Very frustrating and humbling. I’m stuck in the 1900’s.
You and I are in the same no-tech zone! But we keep on trying so good for us!!!!!!
Mornings are not the same when I can’t see or most of all hear our Osprey family. I am still feeling worried for George and Sandy. They left right before hurricaine Joachin swept in. When Spring comes around again we will know if Gracie and George make it back. Sadly we will never know about “our kids”.
I wish they had tracking devices. Thank you Tommy and Paul fpr the gift of viewing mother nature in real time.
To Gina M.
Many thanks for your soul touching video. It will sustain me until our Osprey are home again. The part that caused me to break down was hearing Sandy’s cries before she took off on her first journey of migration. A sound we will never hear again.
wish they had tracking devices. Thank you Tommy and Paul for the gift of
Repair in real time.
To Gina M. The gift of your soul touching video is an early Christmas present for us all. It will sustain me until the Osprey again grace us with their presence.
Out here in the eastern part of Nassau County, about 45 minutes as the osprey flies (not by road) of “our” nest, I saw many ospreys this weekend. One was in a previously abandoned nest in Mill Neck and there was a group of them flying over a fertile fishing area in Cold Spring Harbor.
Many months ago I posted that I have seen them into October and this year is no different. I can’t help but think they are northern birds on their way south. If you follow OspreyTrax, you will see that North Fork Bob has been taking his sweet time on his journey south. He has been in Florida hanging out for a few days now, after spending a week in South Carolina. The fishing here has been so amazing that the long-gone whales have reappeared in our waters.
I went out on a friend’s sailboat yesterday and on the deck was a dead fish with clear osprey talon marks on its body. Who dropped it there? Why didn’t they hang around to eat it? I smiled to myself and pictured Sandy dropping it after a precarious hand – off from George on the boat’s mast. I don’t know what happened, but I like to think I saw a Sandy calling card just the same. 🙂
I miss them, too, and pray for safe travels. I imagine that Gracie has set up her housekeeping in South America, with Ronnie not far behind. If all went well, Sandy and George should, at the very least, be in Florida if not Cuba. I just hope none of them spend anytime in the Dominican Republic, since the shoot them because the farmers think they are after their chickens. We need an awareness campaign for them to know they are fish eaters – not chicken.
I like that we are all staying connected 🙂
GinaM, thanks for all your Observations. I still check our nest a couple of times a day. No Ospreys but always great to read the comments. On the weekends I look at every Osprey nest I see. They have all been empty. I wasn’t able to see your video until a couple of days ago. How wonderful. Loved it. Crazy how attached we all are to them. I am so glad the camera is still up and running. Thanks again to all involved.
GinaM, thank you for keeping us updated on osprey sightings. It will be hard not knowing how Sandy and Ronnie are doing next year. They’ve become so much a part of our lives. People say to me “they’re just birds” but I tell them they are more that that to us. They are family. Keep posting.
I’ve been checking out the Southwest Florida Eagle cam as recommended by Richard Russo and I almost feel like I’m cheating! But it was interesting to read about Ozzie and Harriet and the sadness of his death. Life still goes on…and I will keep this site on my favorites list to get me thru the long osprey-less winter.
Carol, I’ve been to the Eagle cam also. Nice to have something else to check in on. It’s sad about Ozzie. I miss our Osprey family and am currently reading “Soaring with Fidel” as recommended.
I have been watching the SW Eagle Cam the past month also. I happened to see the news of Ozzie’s death about an hour after it was posted and the response has been overwhelming. He truly was loved! However I don’t feel the attachment to the nest as I do for ours. It kinda just fills a void now.
CarolV, I was looking in at the Southwest Florida Eagle cam as suggested. Dang, what did I see — a plastic bag fluttering in a branch nearby. If people only knew what can happen to our feathered friends.
So funny,,,and yet, not funny!!!! I missed that!
I miss them 🙁
Yes I miss them too. Thank you to everyone who made this website possible, it was an amazing view into nature.
Went to Riverhead again yesterday and as I crossed the river estuary area, I spotted two osprey, seemingly checking out fishing possibilities. They weren’t idly riding currents but seemed to have purpose. This is a wetlands area and a good fishing spot, judging by the cars that are often parked near a path where people can get down to the river’s edge. So some are still here.
I saw two in Oyster Bay yesterday. Maybe they are late travelers from up north? The fishing is very good right now.
Sounds like they are looking for carry out………
I think we should all pack up our lawn chairs and a cooler and head to Bob’s….. It sounds like he is in a perfect place to be in winter….. Especially since he has osprey all year round……along with all the other wildlife he mentioned….I gotta admit.. I am jealous… 🙂
Wow Gina AMAZING
Thank you Gina I do get emotional when I see these memories.. It was a first for me and gained much appreciation for these stunning Ospreys. Thanks again.
Just saw the video. Thank you GinaM. It was wonderful and now i’m sobbing again, but in a good way. Gosh we are so in love with these birds!!
GinaM, thanks so much for sharing your collage with us. It really makes me realize how much our feathered friends were so much a part of our lives. It’s amazing how George and Gracie matured and changed from the beginning of the video. I guess three hungry babies will do that! We know that they kept Ronnie and Sandy well fed as the days went on. I think in the beginning, when they first became parents, it was a challenge to them. As time went on, they really became wonderful parents. I’m really looking forward to another family next year. I pray that God will keep the four of them safe, even though they went their separate ways and we will only see George and Gracie in the spring. Enjoy the nice weather today, everyone!
I don’t know if there is a better way to save Gina’s video. What I did was: at the bottom right of Gina’s video screen, click on the You Tube button, when that comes up save in favorites.
Thank you Gina for the beautiful video. It summed up all the beautiful moments this past summer. I have truly enjoyed viewing daily and reading the comments. Never knew there were so many clever, funny individuals on Long Island. Last but most importantly I great big thank you to all involved for this wonderful adventure.
Wishing a mild winter for us all.
To all my Osprey Zone friends, if you want to fill the winter “birdless” gap, check out Southwest Florida Eagle Cam and also their Facebook site. Very,very exciting happenings within the last 30 days. Also a great opportunity to check out their cam system.
To GinaM. Your magnificent video captured the true essence of the joy and amazement that this Osprey family has brought to all of us. You told their story with such grace! I’m sure that Janis would have been very honored to have had her name attached to your work of art!!
Having a severe Empty Nest moment tonight, I went to ospreytrax.com to see if there were any recent posting of any sightings of local osprey with transmitters. I found really funny a post from Rob B. on Sept. 15th, 2015 that talks about North Fork Bob: “Around Long Island Sound, Charlie (Fishers Island male) is spending a lot of time on Gardiners Island, just as he did last year before taking off, so I suspect he’ll leave soon. North Fork Bob seems to like his new nest and can’t seem to tear himself away from it. They should both leave soon(ish).” Sounds like our Sandy, doesn’t it? But, sadly and gleefully we know she’s well on her way with her Poppa. With the storm and weather temp. drop, she could not have left a minute later. Although we will never know, somehow I think she’s going to decide that Florida is just her “cup of tea” as they say, and she’ll hunker down there. She’s lazy and if there is ample fish available, why fly across that scary Caribbean? I know that Ospreytrax has delayed postings, but do any locals still see Bob? I’m very interested in this year’s migration for Bob.
I installed an app named Movebank in my Ipad. As I understand it, it is for Ipads or Iphones. It shows North Fork Bob’s movements. Is not loading right now. The last time I checked, he had not been heard from for a few days.
Gina M, thank you for sharing the video! Well done!
Gina M thank you so much for the video it was absolutely wonderful to watch. I must admit it was a little shocking to see in your video we’re almost all the same snapshot pictures that I took imagine that .You must have had your TV or computer on 24 hours a day just like me. It was really nice, I know it must’ve taken you a while to do so thanks for doing that for all of us.
See you again next year!
Thank you, everyone. I was really excited for you to see it and am so glad you enjoyed it.
If I paste the link the video comes up without the link. If you go to Youtube and put into the search box “Osprey Summer of 2015” it should come up.
Your comments are really nice. Thank you.
This is for Helen: Would it be possible for you to tell me how you saved the video? I would love to keep it for future viewing when I am missing our lil family. Thank you so much 🙂
For Gina M… Enjoyed this so much!!! Thank you!! Definitely have Empty Osprey Nest Syndrome!! Miss them!!
ChrisH…I’ve been on vaca this week. Last sighting was Thurs.the 1st. Was off on Fri. I didn’t see him on Sat the 3rd, when I went to work and left around times when he was usually on his post. I had the “feeling” that he was gone….
sniffle…sniffle.. We women are particularly EMOTIONAL over “empty nest syndrome.” Loved video from beginning to end. Song with it not so much. Just felt it was a peaceful, majestic moment, not really jazzy or rock moment. Just me, I guess….
7:50 am wed morn. A couple visitors checking the nest out.
Nice to see life in the nest beyond waving plastic!
TO PAUL, TOMMY AND ALL INVOLVED IN OSPREYZONE:
Just wanted to thank you all so very much for making this website available to all of us. I came across this website the beginning of the summer and can’t tell you how much I have enjoyed our Osprey Family! It is fascinating to watch….I found myself checking in on them every minute I could! What a great summer and experience! THANKS TO ALL OF YOU! Can’t wait till spring….I miss our Osprey family so much…
Dedicated to all of us who are suffering from Empty Osprey Nest Syndrome… and with deep gratitude to Paul and Tommy for giving us this beautiful experience…
Thank you Gina. I have tears watching this. It’s amazing how attached we get to out animals.
Absolutely beautiful GinaM- thank you so much. Can I save it for myself somewhere? I don’t want to lose this. Thanks again. Helen
This is so beautiful. Thanks so much!!! Miss them dearly but love that everyone is still on & commenting as always.
Wonderful, Gina! Thanks for putting all those precious moments together. And Janis’ rendition of “Summertime” – perfect!
GinaM..Thanks so much for that glorious montage,,I’m teary eyed and I didn’t even have sound on! JJ and “Summertime ” would have undone me..will watch and listen next time!!!!!
I don’t know why this never came through to my email when you originally posted it, but I’ve now received the link and viewed your compilation of our osprey family footage. . Wow you picked every great and meaningful moment which is a testament as to why we are so attached to our feathered friends. You did a GREAT job! Kudos! I miss them terribly – really experiencing withdrawal here and hoping for a quick winter. I’d love to save this “film” to my computer – but how?
Awesome Gina…loved the “Summer of ’15”! Thank you!!!!
GinaM – Thank you for the beautiful memories!
Thank you GinaM…beautiful!
That was absolutely beautiful Gina M. Thanks for sharing this video. I miss them……
That was beautiful. Thank you for sharing it with all of us 🙂
We figured out how to save it which we did. Thanks for it.
What a great capture of the whole summer…Loved it..especially the sounds at end…what an amazing viedo..Thank You so much for sharing and the work you put into it…OA
This is great, Gina… what a wonderful recap!! Thank you for making this and sharing it with us. I’ll be watching it over and over!
Gina, Thank you. Beautifully done.
Gina, I watched the video this morning….It is beautiful… now I can watch it every day.. 🙂
Gina, Such a great job! Beautiful moments to remember.
Gina, that was wonderful. Video and soundtrack were both top notch. I did not start watching until post Pee Wee and was the whole timeline. Beautiful. I just received my copy of Soaring with Fidel. Just started it, it is well written and an easy, informative read. Can’t wait to read more.
Be well everyone, I keep logging on every day and it is nice to feel like a community. Love to watch the nest and water in the background. ‘Till Spring! Everyone be well!
Dear GinaM – thank you! what a nice video to end the summer of 2015! Once again – thank you Tommy & Paul!
Gina. Would it be possible to send me some of the early photos? My email is email@example.com
WOW, Gina, thank you, that was fabulous!!! Definitely brought tears to my eyes. What a great job you did putting that together.
Superb. Many thanks.
Your YouTube anthology of our NF ospreys was well done including one of my favorite singers who is now lost to us. I have ospreys outside my door all year long so I don’t miss that particular family as much as everyone else. The great majority of comments leaves me to wonder if anyone has a life other than these birds. I guess I’m just spoiled as I see them each and every day. Can’t quite identify with this one group when I have so many others keeping me company where I live. I have one across the street who actually seems to respond to my inaccurate calls and certainly looks down at me from far above when I wave to he or she. In any event, thanks for your great post. I know it took a lot of effort. As the rescue showed us, osprey will often bring dangerous materials to their nests that without intervention could easily kill them which happens quite often, I’m sad to say. NF Bob was not the only osprey to get torn apart by eagles. This is nature’s way and the only thing I can do as a surf fisherman is make sure I don’t leave any fishing line or other dangerous detritus on the beach and clean up other’s leavings as much as possible.
It was just fun to watch Sandy’s departure, which couldn’t have been better if scripted and then jump right to the June 19th video. All was peace and harmony; Gracie hadn’t turned in to the harpie who threw George out as soon as he delivered; everyone got fed; and full tummies put everyone to sleep. Easy to put aside knowledge of what was to come..bad and good.. and enjoy the precious moments.
Please correct if wrong…
Gracie(mom) left about Sept.8th
Ronnie(1st born) left about Sept.21st or 22nd
George(dad) and Sandy(the squawker) were seen ..presumably..taking off together on the 27th? although Tommy felt it was Sandy who said good-bye on the 29th
Already correcting myself..Tommy saw ?Sandy on the 26th
I was in Riverhead today, ( right where the Forks of LI split) and we saw two osprey sailing on the thermals. They weren’t even particularly close to the water…but there is a nest on a huge cell tower near there: I guess a short trip to fishing grounds isn’t an issue….Anyhow..excuse the sidetracking…they haven’t all caught the commuter winds southward. On vacation this week,,will have to make a trip around the area to view erosion and scout for osprey stragglers.
Have you noticed if Verizon Vic left? I know you said he was still around a few days ago.
Chris H. and Carol……. I have been wondering the same thing…..Has he flown south too?
I could almost swear that plastic has a life of its own….seems to be growing. Also, I loves watching the waves the past few days as they were pushing higher and covering the dock/wharf to the left on the screen.
Thanks for the farewell video. I think some of the lyrics from the Sound of Music are appropriate…..
I hate to go and leave this pretty sight
I flit I float
I fleetly flee I fly
wish there were some comments. Missing our family.
Hi Kathy. In case you didn’t see them, some comments are under the “Farewell” in Highlights. I miss them too! A Lot! I think it is because we will never see Ronnie and Sandy again.
If you lower the nest pole, then maybe George and/or Gracie might fly over it looking for the original height…Maybe leave well enough alone…but keep PSE&G on speed-dial.
Ospreys are not going to miss their own nest, they will know to fly back to that spot and will see the nest, i think 80 feet is a little to high anyways, 20 feet is pretty good, that’s the height at hog island, it’s a manageable height for the owners to fix the cam e.c.t. and do whatever else they need to do.
I thought Paul meant they are planning to lower the tower by 20 ft, not to 20 ft. It would still be 60 to 70 feet high. Is that correct Paul? I can’t wait to see the process.
The waves are rough and higher…. Columbia South Carolina is getting dumped on…… I do hope our osprey family is in the clear…..
It’s a chilly Sunday morning, so what better to keep me warm than my Osprey Zone sweatshirt. That reminded me that I haven’t been on this website for awhile and I knew just by the date, I missed the departure of our beloved ospreys. Thank you for giving us the opportunity to peak into the world of nature and to fall in love with a beautiful family of God’s creatures. I hope they will be safe in their travels south and we will one day meet them again.
hey did the birds leave where do these birds fly to because i live in canada in fergus and i was watching 4 osprey birds but one died but the birds i was watching they are already gone to latin america
Paul THANK YOU so much for farewell viedo…did not know Sandy left first and Dad follows….so beautiful…I missed it, was away. Thanks again to you and Tommmy for all that you did…now have my Osprey books lined up to learn more..
Karin…so either windforceflex or Tyvek nest wrap would work here?
Just watched the Farewell video..was so glad to see it! For whatever reason, that morning my video feed kept breaking up each time I scrolled back…so I’m happy to see this latest addition!
Those are real waves breaking on the beach below! Can’t imagine what the ocean has looked like today. Will have to take a ride over there tomorrow. Glad Joaquin looks like he’s staying out to sea.!! Thoughts and prayers for all who have been so severely affected by this storm….
Also, Karin, if Bob keeps making us jealous, we may have to have our OWA meetings in HIS yard !!!!!!! We’re heading your way, Bob!!!!!!!! Just, kidding, Bob, sounds like a beautiful area….
Carol, I was thinking the same thing….. It sounds like he is living in the middle of a wildlife paradise. I have been feeling very jealous.
Hi Tommy & Paul hope all is well, can u tell me if this nest will stay till next summer or do u remove this nest and let the ospreys build a new nest?
We are currently planning on leaving the nest intact, but lowering it 20 feet.
Just thought I’d tell all that the osprey are everywhere down here in FL. Went fishing with my wife yesterday and we had the competition of many of these great birds yelling and setting down for a rest right by us. In the water the manatees were swimming past and you must be careful not to hook them. This has never happened to either of us since we try to stay alert (which they don’t!). If you did accidentally hook one the light line we use would snap off at the lure and in salt water as long as you don’t use stainless steel hooks they will rot out with no damage done in a few days. Their real enemy is boat propellers which they seem unable to avoid but they survive most of those encounters with a small scar on their backs. Supposedly elephants are their closest relatives but I can say for sure that elephants are a lot smarter than manatees. Anyway, just thought you might want to know that although our LI family has flown south those of us in the south have many of their brethren to keep us company.
Oct 3 at 7:34 am. Birds working the area but I can’t tell what type. Nasty weather!
Just watched “Farewell”. ….. Tears…sadness…..joy….. Thanks…..to Tommy and Paul….rescuers……such caring osprey watchers……thank you for the experience and renewing my faith in humanity in a very troubled but beautiful world?…..till we all meet again…….stay warm and safe……fair winds under your wings…….
I think we should have our meetings in Tommy’s yard …. we can all sit in a big circle with a campfire and blankies and sip hot cocoa…….Hello, my name is Karin and I am an osprey addict…. I have been suffering from withdrawal symptoms for a few days now……………..I miss them!
Sounds wonderful Karin! I will bring marshmallows!
Does anyone have any remote controlled osprey stuffed animals we could put in our nest?
Okay….. so the nest is holding together very well… why? Is it because of the wet seaweed Grace and George kept bringing in? I would assume wet mud on that would dry some nesting material in place…… Someone mentioned weaving………did it all mush in place from their weight when lying in there and of course walking all over it..? Or could it be a combination of all of the above…..?
Wow!!!! That wind! I was getting seasick! The waves are whipping thru and the tower(or camera) is rocking! Why am I not surprised the plastic is withstanding all!!! You’d think it would rip! Love to know brand! Would send as possible commercial on durability!
. Forceflex… only the best for our osprey…. 🙂
Carol, I thought of a better one….. it would be that Tyvek House Wrap….. 🙂
Empty (osprey) nest syndrome here!
Just want to say thank you Tom… Reading your comment made me smile and brought tears to my eyes… I will be looking forward to next year when George and Gracie returns… Thank you again I so much enjoyed it… Have a great rest the year…. Take care… Cathy
Paul now that the nest is empty is there a way you can allow us to download pictures to share with everyone on the Osprey zone ? I would love to share some pictures that I was able to capture !!
Looking into better solutions for comments etc. I’d like to have an image capability.
Spot.im has all that stuff.
These past months have been like a roller-coaster, many highs and many lows. I want to thank you for the ride. It has been the best experience and I can’t wait till next year!
All the best to you.
I want to thank Osprey Zone for having shared the experience with us. It has truly been amazing.
oh. as soon as I posted my comment a couple minutes ago lots of comments showed up… now I gotta catch up… I thought it was strange not seeing any new comments…. I guess my page was stuck.
It’s so strange seeing the nest so empty and not seeing any new comments… I kinda think we are all a little lost and of course I guess Tommy said it all….. I did see either Wednesday or Thursday morning an osprey flying low with a nice big fish in it’s claws……. But alas… I knew it was not from our nest…… 🙁
The latest NWS update has Joaquín eventually turning Northeast and out to sea. I think this is good news for our Ospreys. Sometimes I wish they were chipped so that we could track their progress. But then there is the possibility of facing more sadness, as in the mysterious journey and death of Artoo this past week’s. Artoo, a much loved Osprey, was tagged, chipped and tracked by the Squam Lake Osprey Project in New Hampshire. Very sad. Combine that with the death a few days ago of Ozzie the eagle in Florida (Ozzie and Harriet were a long mated pair), and ……well, just a bit too much sadness for one week. I am hoping that George and Gracie and the kids have a prosperous and safe season. We will never know if Ronnie and Sandy survive their first migration. I will always think about them and wonder. And we all will await with great hope and anticipation for George and Gracie’s return in the Spring. By the way, if you go to the Southwest Eagle Cam site, and you read the posted comments (almost three thousand in the past two days since Ozzie’s death), you will recognise the bonding that is created by these web cams. It is truly like losing a member of the household.