Jordan Lake: In flight, the white marks at the end of each flight feather of a fledgling osprey look like dots (I call them “rivets” as at a distance they look metallic to me). This female fledgling gave me a very close fly-by. You can easily see that the white is actually an edging of the color at the feather tips. These “dots” wear off over the next 12-18 months and so by the time this osprey would return to Jordan Lake in about 2 years, she will have lost her rivets.

Jordan Lake: the autumn migration of the ospreys is nearing a close. Most of the adult ospreys have already left for South America. This fledgling male osprey had been fishing with great enthusiasm near one of the ramps yesterday when he took a break and let me marvel at his neat precise landing. The latest I have seen ospreys at Jordan Lake is early November. Plan a trip to the boat ramp nearest to you or to the Jordan Lake Dam and watch as the youngsters work to gain muscle and perfect flying and fishing skills for their upcoming trip to South America.

Jordan Lake: I watched this female Osprey Fledgling catch a fish this morning. Then she promptly did what she needed to do next: the youngster shook off all the excess water from her dive and lightened the weight she had to carry in her flight to a nearby tree. The shake is done exactly the way a dog does one … starts at the beak and twists through to the tail.

Jordan Lake: This osprey youngster is one of this year’s fledglings. The male osprey has caught himself a nice sized fish. He is certainly perfecting his fishing skills!

Jordan Lake: life at the lake is always surprising me … as with the female fledgling osprey in the first two photos … who is much, much darker in plumage coloration than most ospreys.  Her markings are a rich chocolate brown.  I have included a photo of a female fledgling osprey in the normal plumage colors I see at the lake.  Note the beautiful amber eyes of both birds as well as the white markings at the tips of their feathers.  

Jordan Lake: Captain Doug and I aren’t sure that the youngster’s flight this morning was his very first, but it is a fair guess that he couldn’t have been flying for more than a day or so because he wasn’t seen flying yesterday. Enjoy the young male as he leaves his startled sisters behind and goes to explore the world!