Good morning from the cold, cloudy and breezy Eastern Shore of Maryland! It sure feels more like April than June around here. Osprey Girl and her friends are at the beach for a week. I can’t help but wonder what a bunch of 17 and 18 year olds do at the beach when it is 59 and rainy, but I guess I really don’t want to know. She will be off on her own in a couple of months anyway, so I guess I need to worry about something else, like baby ospreys!
What did I say? Baby ospreys? But the window for Tom and Audrey’s eggs to hatch has passed, you say! Do you all remember the title of my last blog, “It’s Not Over Till It’s Over”? Well, our dear friend and osprey expert Dr. Paul Spitzer came up with a remarkable idea, although to him, it was just another day in the osprey world. During his many years as an ornithologist, Dr. Spitzer has conducted many, many scientific studies. Early on in his career, he was studying the effects of DDT on raptor eggs and survivability. As a major part of his study, he moved eggs and chicks from nests in Connecticut to nests in the Chesapeake Bay, and vice versa. The survivability of the chicks that were moved from nest to nest was excellent. According to Dr. Spitzer, the parenting instinct of ospreys is mighty fine, even for chicks that are not their own. He suggested that we place a foster chick in Tom and Audrey’s nest, and see what happens. Dr. Spitzer is quite confident that Tom and Audrey will make great foster parents. Additionally, he feel it would be a shame to waste all of the technology that is in place to be able to watch our nest. So here is a Facebook post that was just entered onto the Chesapeake Conservancy’s site:
The Chesapeake Conservancy has been in touch with several government agencies and raptor biologists about the possibility of Tom & Audrey fostering chick(s). Each year, a growing number of osprey construct nests on navigational markers, boat docks, bridges, airport communication beacons and numerous types of other elevated structures near water, including cell towers. In some cases, according to Craig Koppie, USFWS Raptor Biologist at the Chesapeake Bay Field Office in Annapo…lis, Maryland, these nest locations may pose a safety risk to the pair or their young or may interfere with 911 emergency communications. If there is a problematic or nuisance nest that is deemed a hazard and meets the requirements for nest removal, efforts are made to relocate either eggs or young to foster nests if opportunities become available. The word is out in that community that Tom & Audrey could be great foster parents.
We are standing by to facilitate should this possibility come to fruition. Stay tuned!
Now, as you all know, there are no guarantees when it comes to Mother Nature and her stubborn ways. But this is certainly a wonderful development. And if we have success, may I suggest the name of Annie or Oliver, two other famous orphans? We will keep you all posted!
In the meantime, we remain-
Crazy Osprey Man, Mrs. Crazy Man and Osprey Girl
Here is our first contestant for the “Where In The World Are Tom and Audrey?” contest:
If you are enjoying the osprey camera and blog, please consider a donation to the Chesapeake Conservancy so they are able to continue supporting programs such as this one. Go to http://chesapeakeconservancy.org today. Thanks very much.