Budding Birders – Florida Part 2 (Ospreys)
By: Pat Coate
While in Florida, my sister and her family got to go on an airboat ride near Vero Beach. The kids really liked seeing the osprey since they got to see them up close, with fish and with their babies. During the breeding season the male does the hunting for food and brings the fish to his mate and the offspring. He will often chow down on some of the fish before bringing it to the nest.
Many different birds had nests in the area including osprey, great blue heron and egrets. It was unexpected to see nests of the different species so close together as shown here. A fellow Cattaraugus County bird club member noted that he has never seen an osprey in Western NY build a nest in a tree; they are built, instead, on nest platforms or other man-made structures.
Another shot of an osprey carrying food.
Florida birds are VERY co-operative. You can get especially close to them on the airboat ride.
Maddie really liked seeing the osprey babies, especially watching them be fed. The ones she saw were younger than the one pictured here because she said the osprey chicks she saw were bald.
This osprey was hovering above a lake, presumably hunting for fish.
And, finally, an action shot for my nephew Logan.
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