Bella & Beau 2019: One, Two, Three – Cute As Can Be

Osprey nest location:  Cambridge, Maryland, Chesapeake Bay Region, USA

June 9, 2019

A week has passed since the last update, and it’s exciting to report Chick #1 now has two siblings!

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All three chicks lined up for a feeding

 

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Three Hungry Chicks

 

Bella & Beau checking out their new chicks.

 

Beau seems to give more looks of surprise, the looks are priceless.

 

Since the hatchings, Bella has become the full-time incubator and chick feeder, only taking breaks to exercise or wash, before being back to the nest in a flash.

Beau always seems nervous and bewildered when she goes.  He’ll glance at the chicks but keeps his eye on Bella the most.  What is he supposed to do?

“Come back, Bella!”

 

I am most sure Beau would rather be fishing, right?!  Of course, Beau now has to step up his game on quantity and size to feed Bella and three very hungry chicks.

Beau’s fish have indeed been been coming in bigger, and many with the head still attached.  Beau will have to find his nourishment inbetween runs best he can.

This specific instance, Beau was enroute with a fish and had to chase an Osprey intruder away before delivering it to Bella.  Talk about doing two things at once!  Go, Beau!

 

Another fish delivery….

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Beau delivering a fish and Bella aggressively taking it

 

Bella will feed herself first, hungrily devouring the head and gills.  She then begins feeding the chicks the meatier portions in small bites.

Feeding Time

 

Feedings easily last 20-30 minutes.  Although Chick #1 is the biggest and most aggressive to grab the offered bites, Chick #2 is right in there alongside #1, getting his share.  Chick #3 is hanging back, sometimes not even up and trying, letting the older ones get their fill first.  But after a couple minutes, #3 tries to get in there for a bite.  Bella is awesome, ensuring #3 is getting his share too!  It can be very tough for the third chick to survive if food is scarce, even more so if any Osprey has four chicks.

After delivering, Beau gets out of the way, perching on the wood block until the feedings are done.  His job is to keep his eye to the sky for any intruders, alarming when necessary.

Beau alarming an intruder

 

We still have numerous Osprey flying overhead often, agitating Bella and Beau to no end.

Bella mantles over her chicks while she & Beau warn intruders

 

Beau would prefer to have a rest and scratch an itch, which always feels good.

Beau scratching an itch

 

While shooting the Barn Swallows around our marina, I can still see Bella & Beau’s nest, although it is at a distance farther than my balcony.

It was then an awesome photo-op moment occurred.  From the marina docks, I watched Beau fly to the nest with a fish.  Bella didn’t jump up like she always does, screaming and grabbing.

She just ignored him and stayed incubating.

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Bella ignoring Beau’s fish delivery

 

Bella must have told Beau to “Shhhhh…the babies are sleeping, go!”

I watched Beau take flight and fly directly towards and past me…..

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Beau in flight with a fish

 

And then he landed atop a sailboat mast six boat slips from where I stood.

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Beau preparing to land on a sailboat mast

 

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“Touchdown!”

 

He seemed to be worried with something or someone behind him that I couldn’t see.

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And then just as quickly, Beau took flight again and flew off towards the water tower where I imagine he either ate the fish or waited with it for Bella to call when time.

 

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Beau departing the sailboat mast

 

Talk about a right place, right time moment.  It being Beau made it more special!

Starting today, we had and are due several days of rain showers.  Wet Springs are detrimental to recently born Osprey.  The female parent must try to keep them warm and dry best she can, and delay feedings if possible to not expose the fragile chicks to the extremes.

We’re sure Bella will do her absolute best during these rough times.

I’ll end with a comical series with Beau trying to help out with more nesting materials.  Bella gave Beau some looks, she is known to prefer to arrange her nest herself.

 

 

And a shot of beautiful Mama Bella.

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Bella taking a break on a warmer day, giving the chicks some fresh air.

 

 

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