Olivia Scores Dinner

Not only have we enjoyed the cooler temps this past week, so haven’t our osprey.  It’s a bit distressing to see them in the heat panting and the babies trying to slide under mom Olivia as she shades them with her wings.  The cooler chicks have been more alert, and getting up and about more makes for better photos to see their size now.  Here’s a few shots over last week, you will notice the chicks’ down is disappearing and replacing with small pin feathers that will grow into full size feathers.  As Lisa at Friends of Blackwater NWR describes it, they are in that dinosaur-looking stage.

They are getting big, aren’t they!  The babies are now about 70-75% of their adult weight; in another 3-4 weeks, they will be taking their first flight!

I also have some exciting shots to share of Olivia scoring dinner for her babies.   The two were up and about, looking at mom, as if they were hungry.  Olivia kept looking up in a certain sky direction, then at them.  About 30 minutes passed and the babies were definitely restless and were giving mom some real begging looks.  After a final look in that same sky direction, she left and circled up and around the nest.  Then immediately, she dove down alongside and unbelievably scored a fish!  Here’s some of the shots in sequence…

She then quickly started feeding her babies.  Now that’s a fresh meal!

Not even a couple minutes had passed, when Oliver dropped down onto the nest with his catch.  Olivia didn’t pay him any attention, just continued to feed.

With the fish still under his claws, Oliver took a quick glance at a seagull who was checking out the fresh fish on display in the nest.  One of the chicks also saw the seagull and let out little cries of warning, it wasn’t very loud but so cute.  He’s learning!

After the seagull circled once and left (he must have feared the roaring chick lol), Oliver continued to stand on the nest with his clawed fish.  He didn’t try to feed the other chick and the other chick didn’t beg any from him, it seemed odd.  But it is normal that it’s the mom’s chore to the feed her young.  Oliver finally decided his fish wasn’t wanted and left with it.  Olivia continued to pay attention feeding one of the chicks.  Maybe she was annoyed Oliver was late with dinner and she had to go get some herself!

Oliver is still one fantastic provider, he just was a bit late that last time!  He continues to keep the nest strong which is also important for the fast growing chicks.  They will be full-grown in another 3-4 weeks.  And Oliver loves that plastic, he’s shown here bringing some more to tuck and pack into the sticks….

As well as more sticks….you can see while he’s working, Olivia is catching up on some sleep with a quick nap.

Stay tuned for more action and antics of our osprey family!

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