Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Change of Tenant


You did not ask but I will share. Perhaps some of my visitors remember the soap opera of Fred and Ethel, the osprey pair that built the nest shown in the photo above this summer.  I watched Ethel, who for some reason seemed the more experienced, seduce Fred into the role of fatherhood. Her dance was persistent because he was somewhat dense for a while. Eventually he got the hang of things. 

I never knew whether an egg or two had been laid because the nest is so high, but Ethel did sit patiently throughout the unusually hot summer while Fred brought her breakfast and dinner.  He guarded the nest while she flew to a nearby tree to eat the raw fish he gave her.  Summer came and went without a single hatching of a new osprey.

Eventually they just used the nest as a meet up place to watch the sun set. Then in early October she left for her vacation down south.  He waited a week or so longer sitting in the snag above the nest in the late afternoons.  I could see his solitary silhouette each evening while I made dinner.  Finally, he also began his journey down south.

Today the blue heron, that sometimes argued with them, claims this nest as his perch most mornings and quite a few afternoons.  He is more mellow when I walk down to the dock and allows me a few quick photos before taking off.  

He may stay the winter and it will be interesting watching to see the osprey reclaim their home in spring from this big guy.

12 comments:

Brian Miller said...

huh, this could get interesting if they do...i am glad he is a bit more docile with you...nice pics of him...

Linda said...

A beautiful picture Tabor. Maybe the heron has an eye on a female near by, and he is interested in some real estate for courting. I love that you keep your eye on the comings and goings of your local wildlife. Thanks for sharing. =D

Celia said...

Such an elegant bird. I really enjoy your bird pictures and observations.

One Woman's Journey - a journal being written from Woodhaven - her cottage in the woods. said...

They are beautiful. None in my area :)

Red said...

Never a dull moment watching these critters. they all have their own agenda. I do remember the osprey story.

SueAnn Lommler said...

I love that photo!
What a magnificent bird!!!
Hugs
SueAnn

Chris said...

The saga continues.

Dave said...

I enjoyed this story Tabor - Dave

Robert V. Sobczak said...

I'm always impressed how you seem to get to know the bird the individual, not just the species. We have some ducks in our back yard that I am starting to do the same.

Barb said...

I do remember the love affair of Fred and Ethel. Perhaps next year they'll have more luck. Your photo of the Heron is wonderful. I liked your story.

Dave King said...

I remember Fred and Ethel. Nature rarely deprives us, does it? Merely replaces one marvel with another. Fab' write.

Deborah Carr said...

Lovely photo of the house-sitting heron!