Fall Glory at the Salt Marsh. But Where Is Papa Osprey?

She’s been looking worried, Mama Sandy. She hasn’t stayed much at the nest since before the storms last weekend. And when she’s been there, she’s been calling and looking around in all directions.

mama osprey at the nest portrait ud31I had not seen Papa Stanley since before the weekend, not even with my binoculars. And Sandy’s behavior at mid-week told me she hadn’t either. She was restless. She  flew around a lot and stayed away from the salt marsh and her bay side hangouts much more than she normally does.

mama osprey at the nest UD31She looked at me and I looked at her. I was starting to get worried as well. Five days no see. Did something happen to Stanley? Or did he just take a few days of vacation time before the nesting season starts late December/early January? Sandy and I had no answers. But we could both enjoy the fall glory of the salt marsh.

yellow flowers closeup ud31Lots of  trees and bushes are in full bloom. And in absence of “traditional” fall foliage, colorful berries bring a sense of autumn.

salt marsh flower tree ud31berries 2 at salt marsh ud31salt marsh berries ud31flowers at the salt marsh ud31At mid-week, I spotted a bird that I’ve not seen at the salt marsh before, a Belted Kingfisher. His rattling calls draw my attention, and hovering high up above the water he was quite entertaining.  His”helicopter” flight was spectacular.

belted kingfisher hovers over the salt marsh ud31kingfisher 3 ud31I also saw a small bird I had not seen there for a long time, a Yellow-Green Vireo. This little bird moves a lot so it took time before I could get a clear shot. I hope he stays around the salt marsh for the winter.

yellow-gree vireo ud31

On my first walk this week, I didn’t stay at the salt marsh very long,  instead I took a long walk searching for Papa Stanley. I got great exercise, but saw no sign of him.

fall beach ud31So yesterday, I had to go out again. I started at the beach. The weather was beautiful, but breezy. I spotted a Snowy Egret contemplating a fishing trip.

snowy egret ud31

Royal Tern “clan” was there too. And they still have many juveniles who give a hard time to their parents. They want to be fed although they have already fledged. Like this little one.

Little Sanderlings were diligently at work, as usual. And a lone gull drew my attention as he was standing on a sand bank looking out on the ocean. Deeply in his thoughts for a long time.

sanderling ud31gull and shells ud31From there I walked to the salt marsh. No Sandy at the nest. But a few other birds were at home, like the young Great Blue Heron and the Tri-colored Heron. Both were taking shelter from the wind behind the bushes close to the Osprey nest.

young blue heron ud31tricolored heron ud31I was hoping Sandy had not disappeared on me too, and started walking towards the bay side. Soon I spotted an Osprey perching on a lamp-post opposite Papa Stanley’s resort. When I got closer I saw it was Sandy. She was sleeping. With a half-eaten fish in her talons. Maybe she’d had a few sleepless nights worrying about Stanley?

mama osprey sleeping ud31

When I reached her, she woke up. And started talking. And that’s when I saw Stanley. He was at his resort with a spotted fish.

papa osprey UD31He’d been fishing in the ocean, maybe far away, and finally come back home. He interrupted his meal to say hi, and listened to Sandy’s talk. He didn’t say a word. I wonder if she told him how worried she’d been. Or maybe she told him this was not a time to take a vacation when he should be planning his proposal gift for her. Whatever it was, I have to say it was great so see him.

With those good news, I wish you all a great weekend. I am looking forward to a family visit this weekend 🙂

76 thoughts on “Fall Glory at the Salt Marsh. But Where Is Papa Osprey?”

    1. Thanks Jackie! I had a blast this weekend. Many bear hugs 😀 And it seems Papa Stanley has listened to Sandy…he’s at home every day (as seen with my binoculars). Sandy is keeping an eye on him now. Have a great week, my friend ❤

    1. Yes, Val, we tend to worry…and Sandy does fit in right there with the rest of us. It was funny to note that the day (Thursday) when Stanley came home, Sandy would sit on that lamp-post keeping an eye on him – when not nodding off 😉

    1. Thanks Karen! Papa Stanley has stayed at home now, I’ve seen him at his resort with my binoculars at least once every day since he came back. The visitor was very entertaining to watch, I hope he comes back every now and then 🙂

    1. It was high drama…but luckily Stanley came back home all in one piece. And he has stayed at home…under the watchful eye of Sandy 🙂 Have a great week, Kathy!

  1. Mama Royal Tern is so patient! As for Papa Stanley, maybe he was just having a last minute holiday before the hard work of courting and parenting begins. Glad all is well.

    1. That Mama Royal Tern is amazing. She just listened to the begging song and I’m sure hoped the young one would be hungry enough to go fishing. Stanley has stayed home now, I saw him today when he flew very low across our garden when Bumble and I were having our afternoon walk.

  2. Magnificent post! You bring sunshine and laughter an a cold and grey morning in the Rhine Valley. 🙂
    Wishing you a wonderful weekend,
    Dina & co

    1. Thank you kindly Dina. I wish sunny days to you all in the Rhine Valley. I’ll be checking on you from the air when flying to Berlin mid next week 🙂 Have a beautiful week!

    1. Thank you Susan! The berries bring a bit of autumn colors to us. Stanley made me worried by disappearing for so many days…but luckily he’s back home now. I saw him even today flying over our garden.

    1. I was getting worried…they usually don’t disappear for so many days other than immediately after the chicks leave the nest. And he’s around now everyday…today he flew very low across our garden when I was outside.

  3. I had hoped for a happy ending, and you delivered one within your more than realistic photos 🙂
    Thank you I love the photos, but more to know they are together 🙂
    Take Care…You Matter…

    1. Thank you Maryrose for your kind comment. I was glad to be able to deliver a happy ending. And Stanley has stayed close to home since his return 🙂 I wish you a beautiful week. XX

  4. I’m so happy Stanley was finally located! Sandy must be relieved… Love the picture of the gull looking out to the ocean, and the video of the tern pestering his parents is priceless!

    1. Thanks Barbara! I was relieved too finding him back at his resort on Thursday. I think Sandy was keeping an eye on him on that lamp-post where they could see each other. The gull watching the waves was beautiful, standing there alone far from his freinds…and the little tern was hilarious. I have to say his mom was very patient 🙂

  5. Great that Papa was found, and all is well in the Salt marsh again. Tiny, I do love your captures of the Kingfisher in flight, and all of your photos are stunning and beautiful. The Yellow-Green Vireo looks an interesting construction for a bird, it looks like a fast flying bird from what I can detect in its wing design.

    1. I’m happy too Papa returned safely. He flew low over my head today when I was out in our garden, so nice to see him. I hope the Kingfisher returns, I loved watching his flight. And yes, the little Vireo is a very fast bird. And doesn’t sit still for photos 🙂 Last year I saw several of them at the salt marsh, but could never get a good picture. Thank you for your kind comment!

    1. Thank you for your kind comment, dear Takami. I’m so happy Papa is back home. I could really sense Mama was worried. The only time they go away from here for many days is right after the chicks leave the nest. They can be gone for 2-3 weeks at that time, but after they come back, I usually see them almost every day. Today Papa flew right over my head when I was in our garden. Have a wonderful week, my friend ❤

  6. Oh, my, that was suspenseful. I really was beginning to worry about Papa Stanley. You have some wonderful images, and this had me thinking… You provide such great PR for your beautiful area, they should pay you for your beautiful work…and following. 😉

    1. Thank you for your nice comment Cyndi. It made me smile. I’m happy things are back to normal at the salt marsh. I’m hoping to catch Papa’s proposal dance this time…and maybe see what he brings to Mama as a gift early January 🙂

    1. Thanks Susan! I’m happy too seeing Papa back at his home. I was getting very worried, and could sense Sandy was too. I heard them communicating with each other today when Stanley flew low over our garden. Just wish I would understand more of their language.

  7. Good morning dear Tiny!Wonderful photo series,lovely bird portraits as always!I so much enjoyed your previous posts,I have left my comments too,but it seems you are very busy and you didn’t notice them.Have a wonderful week ahead ~ Best of luck with your books! Doda xxx

    1. Thank you dear Doda! I have indeed been very busy, but will go back and check for comments, I’m sure I’ve missed a lot. Sorry. Work has interfered…and this whole weekend we had our son visiting here. It was wonderful to get a few “bear hugs” 🙂 I wish you a beautiful week too! XXX

      1. My pleasure,dear friend Tiny!It was obvious that you were busy,I can very well understand,especially after reading about your recently published photo-books.Take your time,I simply mentioned it in case you had thought I had missed your previous,wonderful posts.Happy Tuesday 🙂 xoxox

  8. Oh wow, I am SO relieved Stanley returned! I hope he listens to Sandy for he deserves a good talking to!!! Wonderful images and a story that once again I truly enjoyed!!! Loved your version of Fall, too, Tiny. (smile) I have some more Fall images coming so make sure you get your fill. LOL It’s so good to be here today!! Thank you for this post! Love, Amy ❤

    1. Thank you dear Amy! So happy to see you here ❤ I had to laugh when I listened to Sandy's talk. It must have been quite "hard-hitting" because Stanley turned his back so she wouldn't see his face 🙂 My version of the fall doesn't have those brilliant colors that yours have so I'm looking forward to more posts! We have lots of wild flowers and flowering trees right now though, which is beautiful too. Much love, Tiny

      1. Just like a woman!! LOL Good for her. Perhaps Stanley won’t wander so far next time. I sure hope so! And about those posts I must get them up because from what I am hearing, *gulp*, snow is in the forecast. Here we go!!!! Not sure if I am ready for this even though I purchased new liners for my Sorrel boots. I have yet to buy my snowshoes and one more pair of boots with hat and mitts. I really do plan on being outdoors a lot so I must be dressed for it. Above 25, I will be wearing layers with a vest. Below 25 I will be wearing my down overalls and coat and accessories to match. Geesh, I am getting cold just thinking about this. LOL Have a great day, Tiny!!! Love, Amy ❤

  9. There are no words to tell how lovely the photos and the stories are! So wonderful:-) Best regards Anja from Finland

    1. Thank you! I was very happy to spot the kingfisher for the first time…and got four reasonable shots out of 50 or so. But please don’t tell anybody.

      1. I can *never* get close to kingfishers … and strangely, I almost always hear them first (and don’t clue in that I’m hearing them until they take off)!!

  10. The opening photo is just fantastic, looking back with concern but also still so regal ~ I like how life moves in the salt marsh, like a little soap opera, and this one a very happy ending as Stanley returns 🙂

    1. Thank you Randall. It is, indeed, a little bit of an avian soap opera. But I’ve noticed there is no cheating or dishonesty going on in their world, you get what you see. Now Sandy seems to be keeping a keen eye on Stanley, no long vacations allowed. I hope to catch some of Stanley’s courting dance around New Year 🙂

        1. I’ve thought about that a few times, I must admit. Their world is not without challenges, but it’s honest and so much simpler. Happy weekend to you too, Randall.

    1. Oh, I was so happy to see him! I always check on them with my binoculars, and had not been able to spot him anywhere for five days. I was getting as worried as Sandy!

    1. The weather has been gorgeous…and so many birds returning from the north now. Unfortunately this is a busy month for me work wise so I can’t get out as much as I had hoped for.

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