Late last week, as I left the Merrill Center, I heard the distinctive cheep-cheep-cheep call of an osprey. Didn't see it, but heard the call twice. Sure enough, Litigation VP Jon Mueller reported seeing one over Black Walnut Creek Friday morning.
Our ospreys "winter" in Central and South America and gauge their return by increasing length of daylight. This big fish hawk is right on time. Spring is on the way!
Over the next couple of weeks, the other three will arrive on the two platforms here (making two pairs), as other birds arrive on several hundred other platforms and aids to navigation up and down the Chesapeake and its rivers. Mates will reunite (they normally winter apart), breed, and begin re-building their nests. Spring and summer are busy times for osprey families, and their antics never fail to delight us as the young hatch, grow, fledge, and learn to fish, before departing south just after Labor Day.
--John Page Williams
CBF's Senior Naturalist