Bella & Beau: All That New Flying Works Up An Appetite
(Osprey nest location: Cambridge, Maryland, USA)
August 5, 2018
Bella & Beau have gotten more reprieve from the past constant 24-7 care of their two OspreyTeens that are now eleven and ten+ weeks old. No longer does either parent have to stay perched on the nest.
Both OspreyTeens are now constantly flying about the area, mastering maneuvers, practicing landings, and even challenging intruders at a low-level (chasing gulls and swooping a Mallard).
OspreyTeens in flight.
OspreyTeen in flight.
When a rest is needed, the OspreyTeens will land and perch close-by or on the nest platform. Bella and/or Beau are usually perched nearby to still keep an eye on them.
A lightpost a favorite perch.
OspreyTeens each on a piling. No longer the need for rooftops!
All that new flying works up an appetite! The OspreyTeens have not yet mastered how to hunt for fish; and boy, are they hungry. When an OspreyTeen thinks it’s past feeding time, it will perch on the nest platform and beg loudly to whoever will listen….
OspreyTeen begging for food.
Or even go where Mom or Dad are perched and beg to them from there.
Dad Beau (left) ignoring one of the OspreyTeens begging.
OspreyTeen (on the crane top) begging Mom Bella who is on the cell tower.
A hungry OspreyTeen begging one of the parents.
It’s usually not long before Bella or Beau will show up with a fish. Yes, even Bella is now helping to supply meals.
Bella incoming with fish.
When Bella comes in with a fish and a chick is present (if one isn’t, it comes flying quickly from a perch), the OspreyTeens are still very obedient and passive. Mom Bella will most times still feed them.
Bella delivers a fish to an OspreyTeen who calmly and patiently waited to be fed.
Mom Bella feeding the OspreyTeens.
Mom Bella delivering a fish and is spotted by the second OspreyTeen who decides to not miss out.
When Beau comes in with a fish and Bella is present, Bella again is in charge of the meal and will feed the calm chick(s).
Beau arriving to an aggressive Bella while the OspreyTeens stay calm.
But if Bella is not there, Beau has to deal with an aggressive, hungry chick at delivery. In this series, Beau (who was perched on a piling) catches a fish close to the nest before the delivery.
Beau snagging a fish alongside the nest platform.
Beau always tries to do a quick fish drop and get back in flight and away from the aggressive OspreyTeen(s).
Beau’s thinking twice. “Where’s Bella when I need her?”
The OspreyTeens learning curve is watching and imitating their parents. If you recall in past posts, the OspreyTeens are imitating what Mom Bella always did and still does when Beau arrives with a meal. Another teaching moment is that last series of Beau catching a fish alongside the nest while being watched by the begging OspreyTeen on the nest platform.
After the last eleven weeks of having practically no sibling rivalry, the OspreyTeens are now being…..well, teenagers! Whoever gets the fish from Dad Beau no longer wants to share. In fact, there’s been some aggression.
When the left OspreyTeen tries to get a bite, the right OspreyTeen becomes aggressive. Mom Bella is watching in the background.
Some pushing and shoving ensues between the OspreyTeens.
Mom Bella made some loud noises and the scuffle stopped.
“Okay, truce? I’ll share.”
And just like that, the right OspreyTeen begins to shift the fish around to share with the other OspreyTeen.
OspreyTeen begins to share fish with its sibling.
Both OspreyTeens now sharing the fish.
(Darn it, a cloud took my lighting away!)
Another display that Mom Bella rules the roost!
It won’t be long before the OspreyTeens begin fishing for themselves. Instinctively, Bella & Beau will slow down fish deliveries to force the OspreyTeens to go catch their own meals.
In addition, the last three days the OspreyTeens have been practicing “water dive and lift-outs” as well as skimming the water with their talons. Yes, they are almost ready!
A wet OspreyTeen after a practice dive and lift-out of the water.
OspreyTeen skimming the water.
The beautiful OspreyTeens!
My, my, my, how those little babies have grown and progressed into fine-looking Osprey!