I couldn’t keep myself from checking on the osprey family again. You knew that, right? I had been spying on the nest from our terrace using binoculars …unfortunately it’s too far for me to get sharp pictures with my current camera gear.
So yesterday, after shoving down half a salad late in the lunch hour, I ran out to the nature reserve. Ok – I didn’t really run, but that’s how it felt in the afternoon heat.
Approaching the nest I only saw the mama. She was observing me. The nestling was laying low, but I could see little movement of his head every now and then. They were not eating lunch as yet.
It was about 2 p.m. and papa osprey was nowhere to be seen. That’s until mama osprey thought I had been too sloppy with my camouflage. She gave out a few short high-pitched whistles, cheep cheep. The calls were not the kind of frenzied cheereeks I had heard earlier when the dogs approached the nest, but papa osprey appeared almost immediately! He flew over the nest, looked down on me and tipped his hat (sorry, I missed that picture). That’s old Tiny, he seemed to think, no danger from her. He didn’t even circle the nest, just continued to fly high towards the beach. He has great intuition.
I decided to turn and walked around the marsh to the other side of the nest where the ospreys are more used to see joggers and other loose folks like me. I was still a bit away, busy watching some ibis birds and egrets washing and drying themselves in the marsh, when I sensed something in the air. I looked up and saw a huge fish hanging from the talons of papa osprey’s right foot high up in the air!
Lunch had arrived, fresh from the ocean! There was activity in the nest. I guessed the fish was portioned out. But I got a surprise! The nestling was being fed by his mama again!
I left them to enjoy their lunch in peace and quiet. It was not yet the time for flying practice.
Fly high now – Tiny