Our birds have successfully fledged two young! Chris Nadereski of the New York City Department of Environmental Protection and Don Riepe, Jamaica Bay Guardian for the American Littoral Society, banded one of the young on Monday, June 25th, with the second bird taking flight before Chris could catch it. The small bands, affixed to the bird’s leg, assign a number to each bird, allowing scientists to monitor the populations at various breeding grounds. Both birds were back on the nest doing great the next day.
It takes about 35 days for incubation and about 50 to 55 days for a nestling to grow large enough to fledge, or fly, so we can back track and get an estimated date when the first egg was laid. Going back 95 to 100 days puts us at a laying date of March 17 to 22. This is an early laying date for Ospreys north of Virginia. Don reports that Jamaica Bay has 15 active nests this year. All of this is very good news.
Our Osprey is beginning to forage more extensively as the map shows, although most of his activity is still fairly close to his nest. He and his mate will continue to bring food to the young to support them as they gradually learn to catch fish on their own. By mid-August, they will be pros at catching fish on their own.