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August 27, 2014

The Parents Return

The parents return once more with the absence of a juvenile in the nest box during the daylight hours of August 26. The male visits the box 4 times through the night and the female returns only once, during the male's first visit. We are able to hear a variety of chirrups, twitters and squeaks between the parents (they give each other little squeaks and chirrups when looking at one another). We also hear a continued twitter when the male is alone in the box. The male may be giving the characteristic acknowledgement or self-advertising call to the female. The behavior is thought to signal excitement and is seen as a friendly recognition, the males attention seeking notes may serve to preserve their pair bond.  

August 27, 2014

Could the Fledglings Start Fishing Soon?

Iris and Stan continue to deliver fish to the juveniles. As previously mentioned this family is part of a migratory population, located in the northern state of Montana, this means we would expect that the young would remain dependent on parental feeding for at least 10-20 days after first flights. The first osprey fledged August 6! 

August 26, 2014

Spotted Sandpiper Spotted

The Spotted Sandpiper is primarily terrestrial, often walking along shorelines. It sometimes perches in trees or on poles, especially while on lookout with chicks. We have seen the Sandpiper walking around in the large lily pads on Sapsucker Pond. The birds frequently teeter, an up-and-down bobbing of entire body in the manner of a teeter-totter or seesaw, while walking or standing still. Teetering increases in frequency when the bird is nervous or agitated and ceases with alarm, courtship, and aggression. The function of teetering has not been determined. The Spotted Sandpiper occasionally swims while feeding on the surface. They can also dive shallowly and swim underwater, powered by wings and feet, to escape predators or to avoid harassment from other birds, especially Common Grackle and Red-winged Blackbird. 

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