Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Osprey Monitoring and Banding the Osprey Chicks on the Westport River


 _D8C8815 July 03, 2012 NIKON D800On Tuesday, I was honored to join Anna Salinas and Peter Deichmann, the Osprey monitors of Allens Pond Massachusetts Audubon Sanctuary, as they went to count and band Osprey on the East branch of the Westport River.

First a little history, the Osprey program was started by Gil and Jo Fernandez, who in the course of 40 years installed nearly 100 breeding platforms in the Westport River and Allens Pond.  Since 2002, the Westport River Watershed Alliance and Allens Pond Wildlife Sanctuary have been monitoring the breeding activities of the Osprey.
The three of us went in a small motor boat, which included an extension ladder and a old oar.  _D8C8298 July 03, 2012 NIKON D800 _D8C8304 July 03, 2012 NIKON D800





Extension ladder would be used to climb up to the nests and the old oar was used as a protection against certain Osprey, who were very aggressive in dive bombing the monitors.  The oar held straight up in the air so the the Osprey would just swerve away, it was not utilize to hit the Osprey. _D8C8703 July 03, 2012 NIKON D800 
Most of the Osprey adults would just leave the nest and circle around overhead.   _D8C8415 July 03, 2012 NIKON D800







We motored over to the East branch of the Westport River..  The Westport River is made up of 2 separate branches the East and West branch, and there are Osprey nest on, both of the branches.
We checked 11 nests and the team banded 10 birds on 5 platforms.  Some of the nests were abandoned.
 _D8C8322 July 03, 2012 NIKON D800 _D8C8326 July 03, 2012 NIKON D800 _D8C8344 July 03, 2012 NIKON D800 _D8C8404 July 03, 2012 NIKON D800
 _D8C8349 July 03, 2012 NIKON D800
Preparing the bands
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Banding
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Osprey chick giving the "look" after being banded
A dead Osprey chick was found at the base of one of the platforms. _D8C8630 July 03, 2012 NIKON D800  The question was, did the bird jumped out on its own, but did a predator such as a great horned owl, come and scare the bird off the nest.  One of the nest had 2 young chicks along with one unhatched egg..  As I wrote in the previous blog, we also rescued one Osprey and placed it in a nest, hoping that it will survive.

I climbed up the latter to look at one of the nest and photographed two young chick still in down . There also was an unhatched egg in the nest.
 _D8C8654 July 03, 2012 NIKON D800 .

This project needs support of volunteers and sponsorship of the platforms. _D8C8547 July 03, 2012 NIKON D800  You can sponsor a platform by going to http://westportosprey.org/index.php?page=shop.product_details&flypage=flypage.tpl&product_id=5&category_id=2&option=com_virtuemart&Itemid=19&vmcchk=1&Itemid=19 or by contacting the sanctuary at 508-636-2437



                                                                                                                                                                                                            As an aside: Allens Pond is holding their 9th Annual Duck Derby2012DDlogo August 17 and 18th and the Grand Prize Is Dinner for 2 Anywhere in the World (including transportation and 2-night stay).  The costs of a duck is $10 and you can adopt your ducks online 









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