In the ten days since the two younger osprey chicks passed, the mother fiercely defended her remaining chick as it continued to develop and practice feeding and flying skills.
Though it may have appeared that the the chick was alone on Middle Farms nest a good portion of the day and night, much of the time mom was actually very close by – keeping watch from her nearby perch on the camera above. Dad continued to bring fish to the nest at least two times per day – and up to five times on a good day. During hungrier times, the young osprey seemed to grow impatient and began to battle with mom when the fish was finally delivered. Ultimately though, mom had to finish the feedings, as the chick was not quite ready yet. During this time, the osprey chick also continued exercising its wings as scalloped-edged feathers filled in more and it seemed eager to fly – while continuing to watch mom and dad come and go from the nest.
The osprey chick practices for flight on July 17th, 2023.
The video clips below capture some of the nest activities from July 10th through July 17th 2023.
JULY 10, 2023: In this clip, mom moves out of the way while the chick practices flying.
JULY 10, 2023: Mom watches safely from the right perch while the chick continues to exercise its wings.
JULY 10, 2023: HIT THE DECK! With danger nearby, mom returns to the nest to defend her chick.
JULY 11, 2023: As mom struggles to find the best spot for some sticks, the chick helps her tend the nest.
JULY 12, 2023: As mom stands guard, her chick practices feeding and nest tending skills.
JULY 13, 2023: The osprey chick tries to help mom find the best spot for a piece of bark, then joins her in the call for fish.
JULY 13, 2023: Dad provides for the first feeding of the day, then defends the nest while mom and chick begin to eat.
JULY 13, 2023: The young osprey watches mom fly around the nest and land on the camera, then sits up and squawks at her.
JULY 13, 2023: I WANNA FLY! – More practice!
JULY 13, 2023: When mom gets distracted during the (late) second feeding of the day, her chick gets impatient and takes the fish. Mom tries multiple times to get the fish back but the younger osprey is determined and is able to get some bites on its own – but after a half hour of mostly struggle, mom finally retrieves the remains and finishes the feeding.
JULY 15, 2023: During this first feeding of the day, the osprey chick seems to try to peck mom as she lands on the nest to receive the fish, and then it tries to take the fish – but mom wins this battle.
JULY 16, 2023: Dad is late with his first fish delivery of the day and the chick is not happy – squawking more loudly than usual.
JULY 17, 2023: Though this is the fifth fish delivery of the day, the osprey chick seems eager to feed on its own and takes the fish from mom – but soon finds out it still needs more practice and mom takes over the feeding.
JULY 17, 2023: More practice with a piece of bark, then more practice for flying.
JULY 17, 2023: After tending carefully around her chick, mom settled down in the nest with it for a while – something we haven’t seen much of lately!
JULY 17, 2023: After getting hit, mom shows the chick how its done and leaves the nest to allow more room for practice. We expect the chick to begin its first flights soon.
View our live ospreycam for a look into the world of osprey on Fishers Island.