Sitting at the riprap this morning, some of us were talking about how in a couple of weeks or so, we should see the first returning osprey of the year. Then one of my friends called out, “Doc there IS an osprey!” Oh wow! It is a female and she is too early. I don’t usually see ospreys until the last day of February and then usually the males are the first to return to an area. I am going to worry about her in the cold that is already here and that is supposed to just get more frigid over the next few days. I hope she finds a warm dry perch and that the eagles don’t harass her. Welcome back, Osprey! Stay safe.

Jordan Lake: Momma Osprey Got Angry!
I was tracking dad osprey who had caught a large fish.
Over the shoulders of me and my friend came a swiftly moving very large shadow.
An adult bald eagle was dashing toward dad osprey (unseen here) and wanted his fish.
Momma osprey said no way was the fish that was destined for her fledglings going to go home with the bald eagle.
Dad dashed to the nest while Momma and the eagle pulled some high speed face-offs.
As soon as the eagle was far enough away, Momma Osprey screamed her victory and headed for the nest.

Mom osprey floated in over the north end of the dam and curved past the pine trees.
Instantly a fish crow decided to chase her from his territory.
Mom osprey only wanted a fish for her late breakfast.
Eventually the two of them formed a paired flight formation. 
The fish crow escorted mom osprey until he felt she was not a threat.
He went back to his nest and mom osprey caught a fish and went home to her nest.

Ranger Cove:  Broken Feather Update
 
Broken Feather has learned  2 lessons:
1) that if she picks up the fish that her parent has just brought in and flies with it away from the nest,
she doesn’t have to share the food with her brother Piper.  
2) She is also learning that it is hard to stand on a slippery fish – on a slope no less – and eat it.
 
Sorry about the shaky video.

Broken Feather Update 7/13/2018
 
I got to the lake edge this morning and found Broken Feather on a log at the shoreline.
 
 
She was trying out a new way to fish – not an osprey way at all.
Maybe she had been watching great blue herons stalk the shoreline and go after a fish.
There is an deep pool of water at her feet.
 
 
A fish flashed by and Broken Feather made a leap – talons flared in hopes of catching the fish.
 
 
Broken Feather was almost hidden by the reeds between us as she hit the water.
 
 
Thankfully, ospreys swim well even when they are mad that they have made a miscalculation.
 
 
She missed the fish and I missed the shot of her jumping back up on the logs.
Twice she tried this way to catch a fish and twice she missed.
We will have to see what she does the next go-around.
Dad osprey did bring a fish later in the morning and both Broken Feather and Piper had a meal in the nest.
Her tail made her jink hard to the left as she approached the rim of the nest.