May 252014
This is the fourth year that I have observed  this Osprey nest. It is located in the Whatcom Creek gorge, just downstream from Whatcom Falls Park, Bellingham, Washington. For more background, please see my previous posts about the 2013,  2012, and 2011 nesting seasons. The small photographs can be clicked for bigger images. This year, the female was the first to arrive. She appeared tired and her plumage looked worn. On March 30, 2014, Ma arrives
  March 31, 2014, Ma was preening and resting after her long journey from her wintering grounds.
  April 1, 2014, Ma  
  April 2, 2014, The nest has survived the winter storms, but is in need of much renovation and repair. 20140402-738B4816   April 4, 2014, Pa returned. They were renewing their bond, mating and immediately began nest repairs. 20140404-738B5043
  Ma in one of her favorite perches, supervises the nest repair. Pa was working hard.
20140404-738B5099 After some nest work, Pa gets a fish. He eats his share and then delivers the rest to Ma.
  And back to nest repair.   20140404-738B5209  
  April 6, 2014, Pa arrives with another fish, and again he eats some and gives the rest to Ma in the nest. She flies over to the preferred branch to consume the leftovers.
  April 7, 2014, Ma contributes to the nest work.   20140407-738B5473   April 9, 2014, Pa continues to do most of the nest building.
20140409-738B5542   April 13, 2014
  April 24, 2014, This was the last day that I saw them both off of the nest at the same time. I think the first egg may have been layed on the 25th. Incubation period for Ospreys is 32 – 33 days.
  April 26, 2014 20140426-738B8053 April 30, 2014,  Ma does most of the brooding including the night shift. Pa gives her a break in the morning. She usually perches near the nest to stretch and preen.
  May 6, 2014,  Pa is still bringing materials into the nest.
  May 11, 2014,  Ma on her morning break. She returns to the nest with a small stick and Pa is relieved of his nest duties.
  May 18, 2014,  Ma, at the end of her morning break returns to the nest with a stick. She circled the nest a few times, presumably to be sure that Pa saw her coming with nesting materials.
 May 20, 2014,  Ma on her morning break. 20140520-738B0973    May 27, 2014,  Pa delivered a fish to Ma in the nest. She flies off with it and he takes her place in the nest.
20140527-738B1286 After eating her fish, Ma returns to the nest with a stick.
Pa leaves the nest. 20140527-738B1297 May 30, 2014, I think the egg{s} have probably hatched. The parents seem to stand up and move around the nest more. I saw some movement that could have been feeding the chick{s}. This is Ma on her morning break, perched at her new favorite spot. 20140530-738B1435   May 31, 2014, Pa delivers a stick and takes over for Ma on the nest. She flies to her branch.
June 2, 2014 20140602-738B1824   June 5, 2014  * Pa on one of his favorite perches
Both Ma and Pa were flying around and spending more time off of the nest. I still have not seen any chicks. 20140605-738B2105 Ma
  20140605-738B2176   Pa with a fish
  20140605-738B2210   June 14, 2014  * Ma 20140614-738B3523   Pa
  June 17, 2014  * A quick review of the season so far ….. Ma arrives on March 30. Pa arrives on April 4. The next three weeks see them pair bonding, repairing the nest, and mating. Egg laying began about April 25. The egg{s} hatched about May 27. Three weeks later I had my first view of a chick. It can be seen in this photo in front of Ma’s chest, behind  a stick. 20140617-738B3781   Ma was perched on the edge of the nest, Pa was perched on his branch. He then flew into the nest, seen here at the left. After only a minute he left the nest and returned to his perch.
  Ma made several short sorties around the area, vocalizing as she flew.
20140617-738B3833 Pa made a few trips to get more nesting materials … still working on the nest.
  Pa touched down in the nest, and left with a partially consumed fish.
  June 20, 2014 * A normal morning at the nest. Now that the chick{s} are getting bigger and don’t need constant attention, the parents spend more time perched. Pa lands on his perch.
Like last year, as Ma’s nest duties lessen, she likes to take a morning bath. Here she is drying out after her morning spa. 20140620-738B4142
A Bald Eagle and a Red-tailed Hawk passed by and Pa yelled at them. 20140620-738B4170 Pa flies over to perch next to Ma.
  June 21, 2014 20140621-738B4217 20140621-738B4221 20140621-738B4236 20140621-738B4243 Pa is still working on the nest.
Pa leaves his perch and about an hour later he returns with a fish. 20140621-738B4301
20140621-738B4321 He stops in the nest only briefly and then flies over to his perch with the fish.
After a while, Ma took off from the nest, flew around while vocalizing. Pa gets the message and delivers the remaining fish to the nest.
20140621-738B4421   June 26, 2014 * Under the watchful eye of her chick, Ma delivered a stick to the nest. 20140626-738B4550 Ma relaxed after her morning bath. 20140626-738B4571   Pa stretched and flew into the nest.
20140626-738B4605 20140626-738B4665 20140626-738B4672 20140626-738B4705 20140626-738B4717   June 28, 2014  * For the first time, a second chick was seen. 20140628-738B4896   July 4, 2014  * With Pa perched nearby, Ma was on the nest when I arrived. She then flew off for a stick. Still working on the nest. 20140704-738B5409                 20140704-738B5415             After a few minutes, she again flew off. This time she was gone for about 15 minutes. I was her bath time. She perched near the nest for an extended drying off and preening session. 20140704-738B5430
Some time later, with Pa away from the nest, Ma started screaming. An intruder Osprey was circling around the nest area. Ma was not happy about it. Pa quickly returned and escorted the intruder out of the area. The intruder.
Pa 20140704-738B5592   July 9, 2014  * An uneventful day at the nest ……   Ma 20140709-738B5897 Pa 20140709-738B5919 Ma 20140709-738B5949
  July 13, 2014  * Ma and the chicks on the nest waiting for the next fish delivery. 20140713-738B6460 Pa flies in with a large fish. It looks like a trout.
20140713-738B6484 Pa exits the nest after dropping off the fish. 20140713-738B6487 20140713-738B6499 Ma feeds the chicks. 20140713-738B6551 A few minutes later, the intruder alert is sounded. I was about to leave, but hustled back to a nest view spot. There I saw Pa contending with three Osprey intruders. All four birds were circling over the nest. I’m not sure if these intruders want to steal the recently delivered fish or are just troublemakers. I always wonder if intruding Ospreys are offspring from previous years. In any case, they are not welcome in the nest area. 20140713-738B6604   July 22, 2014  * The chicks are getting big. Pa brings in a fish with Ma and both chicks waiting. 20140722-738B8321 Ma feeds the kids. 20140722-738B8352 After her nest duties, Ma goes for her morning bath. She returns and airs out her wings. 20140722-738B8376 20140722-738B8405   July 24, 2014  * The Family 20140724-738B8697   July 26, 2014  * One chick has fledged. It was perched above the nest. Ma was perched near the nest with a fish. After some time she flies into the nest and feeds the chick that is still in the nest. 20140726-738B8755 After the feeding, Ma perches near the nest and flaps her wings as if to encourage the chick in the nest to copy her. 20140726-738B8824 She then makes several trips into the nest with sticks. Is she teaching the chicks about nest building?
The fledgling. 20140726-738B9029 Pa brings moss into the nest. 20140726-738B9037   July 27, 2014  * Proud mother. 20140727-738B9098 Pa takes a fish out of the nest and eats his share.
The fledgling flies in to perch on a branch right next to the nest where it watches little sibling exercising it’s wings.
The chick that has not fledged is getting big air. It won’t be stuck in the nest much longer. 20140727-738B9309 Ma returns to her usual perch. 20140727-IMG_5920 The fledgling shows off. 20140727-738B9377 20140727-738B9386     July 28, 2014  * The second chick fledged. The first chick to fledge looks bigger and has a darker, more pronounced necklace. I’ll call it #1. The smaller one with a paler chest / neck is #2. 20140728-738B9430 Pa flies in with a fish.
#2 20140728-738B9520   20140728-738B9534   20140728-738B9560 Pa brings a fish to the nest. Ma grabs it and feeds a perched fledgling. #2, I think.
20140728-738B9654   20140728-738B9665   #1 buzzes #2 20140728-738B9732 Ma makes several trips down the gorge, returning with new sticks for the nest. She brings them into the nest, one after another. Is she teaching the kids about nest building? 20140728-738B9804 July 29, 2014  * The fledglings are improving their flying, landing, and perching skills. 20140729-738B9878   20140729-738B9885 #1 seems to like to buzz her sibling. Perhaps this is playful, or maybe training for fishing. 20140729-738B9931   20140729-738B9948 Pa brought a large fish into the nest. #1 grabbed it, flew around the area, and managed to perch on a branch where she ate the whole thing without dropping it.
  July 30, 2014 * #1   20140730-738B0355   20140730-738B0356   20140730-738B0370 #2 overshot the landing. It got its weight too far forward and unsuccessfully tried to hold onto the perch. It had to take off and try again. 20140730-IMG_6069 It stuck the landing on the top of this small branch. 20140730-IMG_6076   20140730-IMG_6079 Pa was still providing fish for the kids. The nest serves as a delivery platform. 20140730-IMG_6097   July 31, 2014 *   #2 20140731-738B0508    
    20140731-738B0589   August 1, 2014  *   20140801-738B0615   Ma was still working on the nest. Perhaps it was nest building lessons more than fulfilling a need to improve the nest. 20140801-738B0618   August 4, 2014  * 20140804-IMG_6292   An intruder. 20140804-IMG_6279   Ma escorts the intruder out of the area. 20140804-IMG_6271   One of the fledgling watches the interaction. 20140804-738B1218 August 8, 2014 * Ma herding another intruder out of the nest zone. 20140808-738B1699 #2
  August 9, 2014  * Pa with a fish delivery. 20140809-738B1784 #1 stretches just before sunset.
  20140809-738B1862 Both fledglings on the nest at sunset. I suspect they may roost there. 20140809-738B1865   August 10, 2014  * Pa, the provider.20140810-738B1882 August 15, 2014  *   The kids chasing each other around in the last hour of light.
  August 19, 2014  *   20140819-738B2593   20140819-738B2613   20140819-738B2680   August 24, 2014  *   One of the kids flies off the nest with a big goldfish.20140824-738B2935   20140824-738B2966   August 28, 2014  *   20140828-738B3439   20140828-738B3443            
 Posted by at 5:12 pm

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