Watching for Osprey

It is the first week of March and getting to be that time of year again.

Time for the return of the Chesapeake Bay Osprey!

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Osprey – Harris Creek jetty (July 2018)


The Chesapeake Bay Osprey departed August/September (some stragglers in October) last year and have been ‘vacationing’, each on their own, down in the Caribbean and South America.

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Osprey – Tuckahoe Creek (July 2018)


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Osprey – Choptank River (July 2018)


The adult Osprey should be heading back now, with an instinctive pull to return to their previous summer home grounds.

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Osprey and nest – Tuckahoe Creek (July 2018)


So, if you were following me last summer, that means…….

Yes!  If all went well during their separate migrations and winters, both Bella and Beau should be heading home now to Cambridge Creek!

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“You mean us?”  🙂
Bella and Beau (April 2018)


In general, the males return first, followed by the females usually within the following week.  So we should see Beau first, by mid-March.  He’ll hang around the platform, and wait/rest/feed.  No home building or repairs will begin until the lady of the house is home.

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Bella telling Beau to get more sticks or food (May 2018)


All Osprey chicks born in 2018 (including Bella & Beau’s two chicks) will not return but stay another full year down in the tropics, learning to take care of themselves and basically enjoy their new life before they return as an adult in 2020.

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Bella, Beau and their chicks (June 2018)



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Bella and her two chicks (July 2018)


I’ve seen my first Osprey in past years as early as today, March 5th.  So I will not be surprised to see eBird and MD Birding pages start lighting up with shares of their ‘first’ Osprey sightings of the season and where any day.

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Bella, Beau and chicks (July 2018)


And so we wait.  And watch.  And listen.

You can bet, for us locals, it is an exciting time for the return of the Chesapeake Bay Osprey!

UPDATE:  I saw my first Osprey on the distant cell tower across our creek on March 12th!  Hmmmm….one of Beau’s and Bella’s perches.  Could it be one of them?  Time will tell!



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