Pre-dawn Glory. And Morning Gymnastics. Mama Osprey Style.

Summer came back. And so did work. But this morning I pretended to be an early bird, and got up before sunrise. I had to go out for a walk, at least once this week. So there I was having coffee on my terrace when the first light showed up at the horizon. The bay was calm. And the sky was on fire. Quite a reward for getting up early.

before sunset on the bay ud30The salt marsh was still in darkness, but with my light-sensitive birding binoculars, I could see Mama Sandy’s white head at the nest. Last night when I checked on her just when it was getting dark, I saw her there too. I wonder if she has started to sleep at the nest already. Claiming it so nobody else gets any foolish ideas.

A little later, when I approached the salt marsh from the beach, it was already basking in the morning light. And SandyΒ was still sitting there. The little prick in the right corner of the nest.

salt marsh after sunriseOn my way over to greet her, I spotted Mr. Mayor, the older Great Blue Heron. He was inspecting the marsh, and handsome as always.

old great blue heron The youngster had also arrived. Presumably for breakfast. But he didn’t like to meet me. He is right in thinking I’m a bit biased about his escapades at the Osprey nest last spring. So he took flight when I approached.

young great blue heron young great blue heron in flight Then I spotted the Reddish Egret. He was scanning the marsh, but wasn’t up to any tricks. Too early, I guess. He hadn’t even gotten his feet wet.

reddish egret I was looking for Miss Rosa. She is usually an early bird. And there she was! Shuffling water with her “spoon” to locate the right breakfast items. She lifted her head and nodded a greeting. Such a good mannered bird, and very photogenic.

roseate spoonbill at sunrise When I arrived at Sandy’s nest, she was keeping a keen eye on the skies and sounding a few alarms. I didn’t see anything alarming. But then I also didn’t have her vantage point. Or her assignment to guard the nest.

female osprey at sunrise I think she was yet to fetch her breakfast. She flexed her wings and did some morning gymnastics. But she didn’t fly away while I was there. I made a short gif image of her routine. Just in case you’d like to try it. I’m sure it will strengthen your wings.

female osprey gif

I didn’t have the time to see if Papa Stanley was at his resort. But I’m sure he’s okay too. Hopefully I can find some more time toΒ spend outdoors over the weekend. With that I wish you all a wonderful weekend. Keep moving!

54 thoughts on “Pre-dawn Glory. And Morning Gymnastics. Mama Osprey Style.”

  1. Nice to see you up so early Helen! Beautiful sunrise, there is a precious stillness that time of the morning, but very active down on the salt marsh. Thankyou for taking us along.

    1. Oh, I just had to get up to get my walk. But this time everything went well and I didn’t fall in a hole like last time πŸ™‚ The birds were also just waking up. Thanks for coming along, Karen!

  2. That gif is great! One of the best things about blogging is trying (and sharing) new things. I’ve learned so much technique that I probably wouldn’t have done otherwise.

    And yeah, Mama Sandy is wise to keep the foolish from their ideas.

    Nancy

    1. Thanks Nancy! I agree…blogging encourages us to try new things… and then bravely share them. I think Mama Sandy knows that her nest is coveted real estate. It’s hard to come by supported nests, like this one, right between two fishing waters.

  3. Visited Sand Key this past Saturday…
    No pics of the birds, no one was home at 3 in the afternoon.
    Maybe we’ll have more luck this weekend.
    I so enjoy your treks, especially since I am familiar with the terrain.
    Love, hugs and blessings … ME

    1. In the afternoon when the weather is warmest, most birds go into hiding in the shade under/behind some bushes, high up in the trees, or in the high grass. You can’t really spot them although they may be home πŸ™‚ I like to go there in the morning (late morning usually liveliest) or just before sunset. Love, hugs and blessings to you too!

  4. My favorite time of day – what wonderful light for your pictures! Mr. Mayor looks particularly dashing and of course Miss Rosa is as gorgeous as ever. Will try to follow Sandy’s example and keep moving this weekend. πŸ™‚

    1. The light was wonderful yesterday, today we have some clouds. The Mayor is such a handsome bird, and Rosa is my favorite model, not shy at all πŸ™‚ Sandy is in very good shape now, molting is done and she’s gained her weight back. She’ll be ready for the next nesting season soon. Have a beautiful weekend, my friend.

    1. Miss Rosa was in such a reflective mood yesterday πŸ™‚ And Sandys workouts seem to be working…she’s in good shape now. In another 8 weeks, she’ll be building the nest again. How time flies. Have a wonderful weekend, Sylvia XX

    1. It’s fun to make these gif images, but this one is a little wobbly because I didn’t have the time to trim all the pictures exactly the same πŸ™‚

  5. A beautiful sunrise and walk through the salt marsh! So glad to hear you got an early morning walk in with that heat and busy schedule. Gotta take care of our favorite salt marsh photographer/blogger. πŸ˜‰

    1. Thanks a lot for your kind words Cyndi! I feel almost sick when I don’t get in my 3-4 walks/week…and that’s happened lately. I’m going to try to improve on that…next week we should have more fall-like weather. Have a beautiful weekend!

    1. Thanks Val! Sandy is an example to all of us. She’s in great shape now, almost ready for the nesting season πŸ™‚ Have a beautiful weekend, Val.

  6. How lovely to start your day by greeting the sun, providing you had an early night! Hahaha. I stay up way too late for that. You posts always makes my day. The wildlife really helps to calm and put things in perspective. Thank you! Hugs, Koko πŸ™‚

    1. Thanks for your kind comment, Koko. And sorry for my tardy response. Life’s been a bit too busy lately. I’ll need a walk to the salt marsh soon again to put things in perspective, as you say πŸ™‚ I stay up too late also, but here and there I still try to get up to see the sunrise. Have a wonderful week & many hugs!

  7. Well,a great birder and now an early bird that did catch the glory of the moment!Wonderful scenery,you caught the dawn painting the skies with her unique magical colours,dear Tinny!Fascinated by Mr.Mayor’s portrait and the performance of the Reddish Egret on the wing!The faithful portraiture work of Miss Rosa mirroring on the reflective waters is glorious and so is Sandy’s posture against the flawless blue skies!And last but not least,stunned by Sandy’s animated,morning gymnastics and your fabulous work again,dear friend Tinny πŸ™‚ xxx

    1. Thank you, dear Doda, for telling me about your earlier comments! I found so many comments I had missed and feel embarrassed. I hope to get up and out early again some time soon, but work has kept me up late so many nights. When the nature is waking up is such a beautiful thing to witness. Much love, Tiny

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