Osprey dine on freshly-caught fish. When they aren't sitting on their nests--usually in a tall riverside tree, on a man-made platform (like the one above) or atop a channel marker --they spend their days swirling over creeks, rivers and ponds in search of their next meal.
When they spot their target, they forcefully apply their air brakes, beat their wings, and hover in place before swooping down to pluck their prey from the water. Then they take off in flight with the live fish clutched in their claws as they transport dinner back to the nest.
This sounds easy, but imagine trying to take off in flight from the water bearing the additional weight of a very unhappy, wriggling fish who is desperately struggling to get away.
For that matter, imagine being a fish minding your own business in a tranquil underwater world. One minute you're casually blowing bubbles while checking out the new fish in town. The next thing you know you're plucked from the water into another universe, suspended from talons as you fly over Queens Creek on your way to the
Recently two osprey stories have appeared in the Gazette Journal.
The first talks about the pond near the Old Mill Skating Rink, where osprey like
In an effort to dissuade the birds from flying across
This week, there was an article about a nest catching on fire at VIMS (the Virginia Institute of Marine Science, where one of my readers works). An osprey nest on top of a telephone/electrical pole evidently teetered off its perch and tumbled onto the wires igniting a blaze.
Scrambled eggs anyone?
The following groups were called to the scene of the fire, which severely damaged
* Gloucester Volunteer Fire and Rescue brush truck
* Medic unit
* Six fire/rescue personnel
* Dominion Virginia Power (aka Vepco)
The osprey, who squawked, "I'm blowin' this popsicle stand!" came away unscathed and was last seen heading hurriedly towards the vicinity of Redart, where she was told there was nothing to bother her except those loud parties and class reunions at the Yacht Club.
On this Friday, a few questions:
* Do you have any osprey stories or observations?
* Have you ever heard the expression, "Let's blow this popsicle stand"?
* Has anyone (from around here) been to the Yacht Club for anything other than
* Did you know that three months from today, we'll be in the throes of Blog Fest 2010?
* Am I the only one tired of these questions yet?