The Makings of an Osprey Nest

I’ve debated myself on whether to post on this just yet, as those of you who have followed my blog for some time know I’ve been wishing with fingers crossed that a pair of Osprey will find our community’s empty nest platform desirable as a home after our beloved previous Osprey pair, Oliver and Olivia, did not return last year.  I don’t want to jinx!  BUT since Memorial Day (May 27th) a pair of Osprey appear to have taken possession of the platform and have started making a nest.  🙂

This pair seem to be young and have possibly paired up for the first time this season, evidenced by the late start on finding a home and the inexperience of getting the nest started.  Sometimes they’ve looked a bit bewildered at it all!  Some of expressions are priceless.  It is too late in the season for them to mate, but that’s all in due time next year, now they will bond and work together to protect their new home if they decide to keep it, which so far they are chasing other area Osprey away and acting as if they own it.

This series of photos are not the best in quality but I wanted to share these primarily for my community followers who’ve been as eager as I have, but also to my other followers to share them and the massive smile on my face!  🙂

To start, this Osprey pair have actually been occupying Lippincott’s Channel Marker No. 3 that I can see at a distance off to the left of my balcony for some time.  They stayed on that marker most of the time, and then would visit our platform to eat a fish and perch for a while.  Back and forth I’ve watched them.

Then several days ago I watched them begin to build a nest on the marker, which is a solid piling, flat on top.

Osprey pair trying to start a nest on Lippincott's Channel Marker No. 3

Osprey pair trying to start a nest on Lippincott’s Channel Marker No. 3

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Sticks are not staying on the marker

As you can see, the sticks and other nesting materials have fallen or gotten knocked off the channel marker as they’ve landed and departed from the marker.  There’s just no room!

Our platform is empty of nesting materials.

May 26 – Our platform is still empty of nesting materials as one visits.

Okay, so where else could they build?  They must have had a discussion the evening of May 26.  Here’s what I found the next morning on our platform!  🙂

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Morning of May 27th

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Yes, this’ll work! (female on left, male on right)

As the male shifts some sticks around, three get knocked off into the water.

Fallen stick

One of the fallen sticks

The male Osprey looks down at the fallen sticks.

Male Osprey looking at sticks he knocked off while trying to arrange them.

Darn it!

Off to fetch stick #1.

Off to fetch stick #1.

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Got it!

Heading back to the platform.

Heading back to the platform.

Here I come!

Here I come!

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Don’t hit me!

Now stick #2!

Now stick #2!



Placing stick in front of female as a gesture of bonding.

Placing stick in front of female as a gesture of bonding.

And now after stick #3!

And now after stick #3!

Don't hit me!

Don’t hit me!

Time for a break after that workout!

Time for a break after that workout!

That series of photos all occurred in just ten minutes.  What entertainment they provide!  The next morning, the pair rests amongst more sticks!

Platform the next morning, May 28

Platform the next morning, May 28 –  More sticks!

May 29 evening

May 29 evening

Osprey pair taking a break on channel marker.

Osprey pair taking a break on channel marker.

The next photo is from this morning.  The nest is coming along nicely!

This morning, May 29th - more sticks!

This morning, May 30th

Just before leaving for work this morning, I took another photo to show the work they did in the hour I was getting ready.  Interesting architecture!

Flag pole!  :-)

Flag pole!   🙂

Well, I was hoping it would still be there this evening but the new ‘flag pole’ has disappeared, either it fell or is laying down within the platform.

This evening, May 30th.

This evening, May 30th

What entertainment they provide out in the open for us to enjoy so easily!  This young Osprey pair are a bit skittish of us, they will fly off if a walker comes along or a lot of movement is occurring on our balconies.  So I’ve been trying to photograph from inside through an open slider so they don’t catch a glimpse of me.  I want them to stay and be comfortable as they learn to co-habitat with us as Osprey will do.

So can you see the massive smile on my face?!!  🙂  Now, time will tell if they stay or move on.  But I am certainly hoping they are here to stay for the season.

I hope you enjoyed, and thanks so much for stopping by!

34 thoughts on “The Makings of an Osprey Nest

  1. I’m very glad for you Donna, I know that you love those birds! Have you thought of any names for them yet? 🙂

    • LOL You must have been reading my mind, HJ! There are soooo many great Osprey pair names out there. 🙂 If they do stay, I’ll check with our community on naming them. When we moved here six years ago, they had named our last resident pair, Oliver & Olivia. And what a cool pair they were!

  2. I believe these two are the osprey pair that built a large nest on top of a boat at the marina next door. They were very busy and had mated I believe. At some time in the past few weeks someone destroyed the nest and left these two osprey without a home so late in the season. Maybe the boat owner decided he did not want to share his boat! It really was a mess. I did however feel sorry for the uprooted osprey.

    • Thank you Becky for commenting on your observation, appreciate it very much! This may be the THE piece to the puzzle of who they are and where did they come from so late to the platform, nice to know! Poor pair! I’ve seen this happen before late in the season after a well-established nest was in place and the spot was not pleasing to the human who’s space they took. Wish humans could take note early on if/when a bird begins a nest in an undesirable spot, especially these which are so noticeable and large, so the pair can restart quickly somewhere else in time for their season of reproduction. Let me know if you see them retrying over at Lippincotts!

  3. First, your series of photos of these two osprey were wonderful. I so hope they continue their efforts to build a nest on your platform.

    We haven’t been by our area’s nesting platforms for some time. Earlier this spring one pair appeared to have abandoned the more distant platform. 😦 And it didn’t seem like the near platform didn’t have any young this year. We should go back to verify that.

    • Thanks Deb for your comments. It’s become unseasonably hot and humid the last couple days and there’s no activity at all on the platform. I’m hoping they’re just perching in a shade tree somewhere, waiting for the reprieve that is coming our way!

      • I went back to check on the local osprey yesterday. The nest on the nearest platform has definitely failed this year. However I saw three osprey flying around while we were there, so it’s not like something happened to the adults. Perhaps because this was the coldest spring on record, there were difficulties incubating the eggs and/or keeping the hatchlings sufficiently warm.

        • You may be right on the weather conditions causing the failed nest, Deb. Since there’s still osprey flying around, sounds as if they are still protecting their territory and nest for the rest of the season. They should return next year to try again!

  4. I’ve been missing your posts because of problems with my page that has the “reader” on it. The whole page doesn’t work. So I’m in the process of finding those I follow and put in my favorites.
    As usual, great blog!

  5. Very cool!! Ive been hoping for an osprey pair to come to your platform!! That is great news! They will be the best photographed osprey in the world! I Enjoy all your pictures of Oliver and Olivia so much!!! Nest building is One of my favorite activities because there is so much action! Awesome news!! They look like a cute couple!!

    • Thanks Linda! It’s been exciting but also disappointing, they seemed to have stop building but are still perching on it. If they are a young pair, the first nest or two can be a messy small one, so I’m not going to worry so much. As long as they hang around for the season, it’ll be promising for next year! 🙂 How’s your osprey family, Angie & Angelo & the chicks doing?

  6. Thank you for visiting my blog today. I appreciate the time you took to stop by. May your day be filled with joy and peace.

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