I Have a Surprise for You, Tiny!

After returning from my trip this morning, I headed out to see the osprey family. Before even unpacking my suitcase. About a week ago, I’d seen the youngster take off for a short flight above the nest, and I was excited to see if she would fly out of the nest today.

Im flying look mama osprey nestling 513
Last week’s achievement!

You noticed I said “she”? I’m now almost sure it’s a girl.  She is much like her mama. Just look at them side by side, the decorations on her breast are quite marked, like an elaborate “necklace” typical for female osprey.

mama osprey and youngster watching tiny ed
Mama (on the left) and youngster last week

When I arrived in the nature reserve, mama osprey was keeping an eye on the youngster, as usual. Papa osprey was nowhere to be seen. I assumed he was on fishing duty. I took my position under the trees and observed the two quietly for about 15 minutes. As there were no signs of anything much happening, I relaxed, put down my camera and just sat there lapping the morning sun.

The youngster is checking out something in the marsh
The youngster is checking something in the marsh

Suddenly the youngster turned, looked down…and just “fell” from the nest spreading her wings. She took me by total surprise! I had expected to see some wing flexing, but she just went over the edge and eased into flight! Of course I didn’t catch that very moment with my camera, but caught up a few seconds into her flight.

osprey youngster flying 521
Hello fish…I see you!

She was flying really low, close to the water. I’m sure she had seen some fish close to the surface and wanted to check it out. Since I was way back from the marsh, I could only see her a few times above the brush and the trees.

osprey youngster flying 3 May 21
Here I come!
I’m coming back mama!
osprey youngster back in the next
I made it!!

It was fantastic to see her fly. Her wings flapped a lot and were not yet perfectly synchronized, but she was in the air on her own flying about 2-3 minutes above the marsh! Then she soared upwards and made a successful, if not perfect, landing back into the nest. I’m sure you noticed how mama osprey was leaning outward to make room for her flapping wings.

Back in the nest waiting for lunch
Back in the nest waiting for lunch

I stayed with them for a while but there didn’t seem to be more practice sessions planned for this morning. I assume that the young one needs a little more flying practice before the diving and fishing lessons will start. I will try to keep a close eye on developments.Juvenile AND PAPA OSPREY 521

Before I left them, I noticed that mama osprey’s balcony plants are still green with some white flowers – after three weeks! I have to admire her gardening skills, among other impressive stuff I’ve seen over the last couple of months.

Hope your week is going great!

 

 

 

20 thoughts on “I Have a Surprise for You, Tiny!”

    1. It is exciting! I’m sure even yesterdays flight over the marsh was fish related. I don’t think she knows how to catch them as yet 🙂

    1. It’s wonderful to follow this family! I’m doing my best to capture some of the excitement without disturbing them. The young one was fantastic yesterday!

        1. We haven’t had rain in 2 weeks now and the day temps are somewhere between 26-30C – any loose grass or cut flowers would have died in a day or two without proper care!

  1. It seems she made that flight just for you. Wonderful pictures!! What treasures you have in all the osprey pictures you have taken. You are so sweet to share them on your blog. Hugs

    1. Thank you Mag! I hope to go back to check on her tomorrow…I’d love to see her catching a fish 🙂 Have a wonderful weekend!

  2. Amazing! Makes me think of how, as adults we fret about “engineering” the perfect growing space for our young when all that is mostly needed is a good example and an opportunity for practice 🙂

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