Bella & Beau 2019: Two Hungry Teenagers

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

July 13, 2019

Welcome back to Bella & Beau’s Osprey World!  I’ll start off with the 4th of July fireworks that occurred a day after my last post.  The noise did not seem to bother Bella and her family.

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Fireworks over Choptank River – Bella & nest lower left corner

 

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Fireworks over Choptank River – Bella & nest lower left corner

 

Both parents have had their work cut out for them with their two steadily growing, hungry ‘teenagers’.

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“Houseful”

 

The teenagers are now going on six weeks old.

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Bella and her two ‘teenagers’

 

Just over five weeks ago…..they were so tiny.

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Chicks just over a week old

 

Beau is still temperamental on when he will and will not go for fish for the nest.  The more Bella hollers, the more Beau will ignore her…..until he decides he will make a fishing run.

Beau not responding to Bella’s call for another fish

 

And then Beau finally gives in.

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Beau in flight

 

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Beau arriving with a meal

 

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Bella thinking, “It’s about time!”

 

Bella is still making an occasional fish run herself when she gives up on Beau, like in this next instance.

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Bella flew to the river and returned quickly with this fish before sunset

 

Albeit late, Beau did show up three minutes later with a fish for the nest.  When he saw Bella already feeding the chicks, Beau went to the tower to sit and wait with his catch.  It was Bella’s turn to ignore Beau.

Beau with a fish intended for Bella and the chicks

 

Beau this time responding to Bella’s sunset call for a fish

 

More of Bella feeding those hungry teenagers

 

Besides to fish, Bella is leaving the nest more often other times, either to fly around or perch nearby, to give the chicks room to move and exercise those growing wings.

Bella in flight

 

Chick “wingersizing” is tough with Bella on the nest

 

“School Time”
Chicks watching Momma Bella fly around the nest

 

Sometimes Beau still comes to the nest to ‘chick-sit’ until Bella returns.

Beau “chick-sitting” while Bella was away gathering nesting materials

 

But Beau usually prefers to hang around nearby, keeping watch over Bella and the nest.  If he’s not fending off harassing Osprey intruders, poor Beau has to also deal with the nuisance of Northern Mockingbirds and Barn Swallows.

Beau vs. Northern Mockingbird

 

The hot and muggy summer days continue.  Bella has a strategy of providing her chicks some shade by creating her “Mombrella”.

Bella’s “Mombrella” for those hot days

 

Many of those humid days transformed into more late day thunderstorms.

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Chicks alone during a down pour

 

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When the rain is over, Bella returns to two very wet chicks

 

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Wet chicks drying out 40 minutes later

 

Enduring the weather’s elements gets pretty tough at times.  Now that they are older and less vulnerable, Bella will feed the chicks in the rain as well.

Bella feeding during a heavy downpour

 

It was the gorgeous days that I captured some beautiful shots of Bella and the chicks while riding past in our boat.

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A moment of bonding for Bella and Beau while the chicks nap

 

Bella and chicks

 

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Chicks rapidly turning into full grown raptors

 

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Beautiful Bella

 

All is good in Bella & Beau’s Osprey World when the bellies are full and the sun goes down.

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We have another successful couple weeks of an Osprey family’s survival and growth, who can ask for more!

 

 

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