The Adventures of Breezy and Spitz

Happy almost end of July! Wow, this month FLEW by, especially for our feathered friends.

As many of you already know, today was a very exciting day for the youngest chick, Spitz. He finally fledged! At 8:50 AM, Spitz took his first flight, but have no fear, he didn’t go far because he landed on top of the camera. Spitz didn’t stay there very long, then became more daring and flew all the way to our boatlift, where he/she rested for a few hours. One of the parents joined him to check in and make sure that everything was running smoothly. Unfortunately, we were not home to see Spitz’s return to the nest, but some of our faithful Facebook friends noted that he arrived home around 1:30 PM. Many of you also believe that there was a “stranger” on the nest today, but again, since we were not home, we did not see that drama play out. I can tell you that there have been strangers on the nest in the past, so it is very possible that a neighboring osprey took a pit stop.  Tom and Audrey are not very happy when intruders stop by, and usually chase off the unwanted visitor with gusto.  Here are some photos of Spitz’s great adventure.  Remember, you can click on each photo to enlarge it for your viewing pleasure:

Spitz's first flight.  Notice the prominent necklace (dark chest feathers)

Spitz’s first flight. Notice the prominent necklace (dark chest feathers)

 

Spitz

Spitz on our boat lift

 

Spitz and a parent around 11:15 AM

Spitz and a parent around 11:15 AM

 

Of course, we can’t forget about Breezy, who is also attempting to make headlines. Yesterday while we were eating breakfast, Breezy took off from the nest and dove into the water. A few seconds passed and then he resurfaced and slowly took off, much to our relief. We were somewhat confused, but we brushed it off and continued eating. About a minute later, Breezy took the plunge again. This time it got our attention and we watched as he continued to dive into the water and then resurface, each time struggling to get back into the air. We realized that these were, in fact, his inexperienced attempts to fish. Each dive took more and more energy from him. After five minutes and five heart-stopping plunges, he stopped and safely landed on our dock.  Fortunately for our resident menhaden, Breezy needs more practice before he can provide snacks for the family.  But he is really trying out his new found fishing skills, and it won’t be long before dinner will be served!

This past weekend, COM installed the three perches that I mentioned in the last blog. The main function of the perches is to provide an alternative landing spot for the osprey, because they thoroughly enjoy using our boatlift to hang out. The problem with their choice of hangouts is our boat cover becomes an osprey potty, which is very unpleasant for the humans who enjoy using their boat (us!).  Audrey was not happy with COM, and kept circling around making very loud alarm cries.

 

COM laying the bases for the perches

COM pounding in the perch bases

 

Audrey circling COM

Audrey circling COM

 

Keeping a close eye out for Audrey, who was circling overhead making unhappy noises

Keeping a close eye out for Audrey, who was circling overhead making unhappy noises

 

Another trudge out to install the perches

Another trip out to install the perches

 

COM installing last perc

COM installing last perch

 

Here is a family portrait taken a couple of days before Spitz fledged.  Guess who can be seen fussing?

Family portrait.  Spitz is yapping at everyone.  Are you surprised?

Family portrait. Spitz is yapping at everyone. Are you surprised?

 

Keep sending in your “Where In The World Are Tom and Audrey” photos.  Here is this week’s winner:

 

Mr. Cooley watching from the Maryland State Highway Administration.

Mr. Cooley watching from the Maryland State Highway Administration.

 

Thank you for contributing to my research, you guys are the best!  Please keep posting any sightings of fish coming back into the nest, with time and species if possible.

Adios Amigos,

Until Next Time,

Osprey Girl

 

189 thoughts on “The Adventures of Breezy and Spitz

    • I miss tuning in and seeing a nest full of feathers and squeeks. I think I am suffering from empty syndrome! hehe

  1. A little earlier I saw Spitz sitting at the nest quiet, then I heard Breezy off in the distance squawking when suddenly I saw some little Osprey feet appear in the distance and I could very slightly see Breezy flying toward the nest squawking and flying at the same time, who knew? He landed on the nest with much fanfare from Spitz, they both stood around squawking and looking off in all directions for a few minutes, then Breezy flew away, Spitz followed shortly after. I thought that was so cute.

  2. AFTER MUCH BEGGING, AND PLEADING, DINNER WAS SERVED, SPITZ TOOK THE FISH, AND BREEZY IS NOT HAPPY, MOM IS STEPPING LIGHTLY, BUT WATCHING EVERY MOVE. YEAH SPITZ, JUST PECKED AT BREEZY, A LITTLE PAY BACK !!

  3. Breezy squawking up a storm because Spitz has food. Breezy tried to steal it Spitz stood up for her/him self “no way Breezy”. Question: The spreading of the wings, is this a defensive move/warning ?

  4. BREEZY FINALLY SNATCHED THE END OF THE FISH, AND IS STILL IN A SNIT, TRYING TO EAT, AND HAVING A FIT AT THE SAME TIME, THIS HAS BEEN SOO FUNNY !! TOMORROW, THE SITUATION COULD REVERSE, THEY ARE A HOOT, BUT SOO HAPPY SPITZ, IS GETTING IT TOGETHER.

  5. At 7:15, Audrey in the nest alone eating a fish. Did she catch it and bring it in for an undisturbed meal? The younger ones must not be close enough to have noticed yet, I suppose. Anyone else observing earlier this morning?

  6. Had to go away for a bit. Came back at 7:34 to find that Spitz had also come back to the nest (I wondered how long it would take for them to discover that Mom was there with food!) and both chicks are watching her eat. Respect for elders? hmmm… How long will that last? Breezy is edging closer and closer… will go for it any second now, I’m sure. Spitz is on the edge of the nest, a little removed from the upcoming action, but he/she is making all the noise. At 7:39, Audrey began feeding little bits to Breezy. Spitz still in the background, making noise. Dare I call it whining? (“Mo-om! Does he get to go first AGAIN? Me too! me too! What about me?). At 7:43, Audrey stopped feeding Breezy and went back to eating. Spitz still making noise and inching closer. At 7:45, breezy flew off. Less than30 seconds late, Spitz got closer to Audrey and she began feeding her younger chick… in between a few bites for herself, for everyone she gives to Spitz. Around 7:50, Spitz started getting every bite she rips off that fish. Audrey must have been really hungry. Now, at 7:50, Audrey is once again eating every bite, whole Spitz watches and waits… less noisy now. Fascinating to watch. Through the whole time she has never lost control of that fish. Mind your Mama, young ‘uns! She still rules the nest!

  7. At 8:00, after getting fed by Audrey a little bit more, Spitz flew off. Audrey once again alone in the nest, eating undisturbed. Sorry about all the typos and mixed-up verb tenses in the previous entry! (Yes, Tend to be a “grammar nazi”) Was trying to keep 2 ” windows” open, flipping back and forth between them, observing and writing… should have proofed before posting… you all get the general idea, I’m sure. (You figured out that “…whole Spitz watches” should have been “while Spitz watches” right?) Anyway, as I prepare to sign off at 8:12, Audrey is back to eating alone, as she was an hour ago — has it really been that long? The time just “flew” by (sorry, couldn’t resist) — and then suddenly at 8:15, both “kids” are back! Here we go again! But alas! As addictive as this is, I’ve got to get on with my day. Back to work!

    • Haven’t seen that one myself. Interesting. Have to keep my eyes open for that. Thanks for the info.

  8. 11:35 Spitz on the nest alone, eating what seems to be the tails of a fish, making quiet little “cheep-cheep” noises while eating Just a leftover from Audrey’s breakfast, I guess? (When I signed off earlier, it didn’t look as though there would be evens smidgen of a scrap!). 11:41- Having finished that scrap of fish, Spitz looked around and then gracefully took off. Was it really only last weekend that this younger chick could barely hover over the nest? What a wonderful age we live in that we can watch all of these developmental steps from the comforts of our homes…that we can all become observers of these amazing details of the natural world. I’m so grateful!

  9. SPITZ HAD ALMOST THE WHOLE FISH, AND DOES MAKE THOSE TALKING NOISES WHEN EATING SOMETIMES. MOM BACK ON NEST WAITING FOR WHATEVER, OR WHOEVER, STANDING IN THE RAIN !! GREAT MOM.WONDERFUL AGE, SOMETIMES, BUT GLUED TO THINGS, AND NOT MOVING IS NOT GOOD, BUT WE DO GET TO SEE THESE BEAUTIFUL GIFTS.

  10. COF–I have several questions you might help me with. I think I can tell the differences in “voices” of the ospreys. For instance, Audrey’s calls sound different from the female at Hog’s Island. Is this how each pair can know each other? I know that the females have their ‘necklace’ but Audrey’s is hardly there! It’s hard to tell her from Tom at times until you see the eye color. Is this something unusual? (other females I’ve seen have more predominant one). And last, but not least, they keep on building up that nest with various materials is this a constant even though the chicks have fledged? I don’t recall seeing this last year. I have even seen Audrey going down and pushing with her breast to form the ‘cup’ as when they were first building it. Thanks for any insight!

    • Oops! I have another ?. Regarding the longer dark bands on Breezy’s legs ,some of us were wondering, is this some natural coloring or is it caused by mishaps in flying/fishing attempts? Thanks again.

  11. I.SAW THAT, AND THOUGHT IT WAS A CRAB, DON’T KNOW WHO CAUGHT IT, BUT LOOKING DOWN AT IT AND NOT KNOWING WHAT TO DO WITH IT WAS OBVIOUS !!! IT RIGHT IN FRONT ON THE LEFT SIDE.

  12. MOM CLEARLY NOT KNOWING WHAT TO DO ABOUT THAT CRAB, AND SQUAWKING GOING ON, CAN’T SEE THE CHEST, AND CAN’T MAKE OUT THE VOICE. HOPE THE CRAB DID NOT BITE BREEZY,

    • I think it’s Breezy and Spritz back on the nest at 6:00 PM—is that little greenish thing stuck in the front of the nest the crab? Poor thing can’t get down and nobody even wants it!

  13. Started watching at about 5:50. Only one fledgling in the nest. I think it was Breezy (darker head markings, not as much white feathering over and behind the eyes as Spitz… but he/she seems to be wet so that might change things. Hasn’t turned around completely, so haven’t seen for sure whether or not the necklace is there.). At 6:10, Tom landed in the nest and deposited a “chunk” of fish — not a head, but no trace of a tail either — and took off almost immediately after. Within seconds, the younger one took off after the parent, but returned within one minute. At 6:11, he/she landed in the nest, almost on top of the fish and grasped it with the right talon… and then spent the next 5 minutes (literally! I watched the clock) seeming to fuss with something about his/her hold on that piece of fish. (Maybe I’m wrong about which one this is? Would have expected this kind of awkwardness from Spitz. But then, I’m just assuming that Breezy has already worked out the “basics” because he/she fledged a week ahead of Spitz.). Anyway, he/she finally started eating at 6:16 and ate continuously, without interruption, until 6:40 when Audrey showed up. There was much squawking on the part of the younger occupant of the nest… didn’t move or let go of the fish, just made lots of noise. Didn’t check the clock, but Audrey didn’t stay long and took off. She returned around 6:05. This time the younger deferred to the younger…let go of the fwhat remained of the fish (less than half of what Tom had dropped off) and moved away. Audrey wasted no time:grasped the fish and took off. A few moments later, the younger flew off also. Back to the “empty nest syndrome” for those of us who watch.

  14. GOOD JOB FRAN, WE WILL SEE WHAT HAPPENS NEXT, I HAVE BEEN WATCHING SOME BEGGING GOING ON AND MOM JUST BEGGED, AND FLEW OFF SOMEONE JUST LANDED, CHECKING TO SEE WHO

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