My neighbors have the luxury of vacationing as far south as French Guiana each and every winter. There they stop and enjoy luxurious living in the rich and green rain forest with the warm sun on their backs. They are quite a modern couple and usually have separate vacations for those months. Unlike me they go by wing and can log over 100,000 miles in their lifetime and many miles in one day!
But, like clockwork, this year one returned on the eve of St. Patrick's day. Unfortunately this is what it looked like on my deck on that early morning while I was sipping my first cup of coffee.
I looked out my kitchen window as the sun came up to the trees and was thrilled to see that either Fred or Ethel had returned. Whichever of the two the hawk looked somewhat shell-shocked as it faced a very white and rather cold day.
Within just a few days the snows had melted and the osprey were being seen everywhere staking their claim from last year's nests as we drove on errands.
There are two in the photo above. One on the nest platform and another on a piling eating a fish...if you look closely you may see them.
Within three or four days the partner to the Fred/Ethel couple arrived at the nest. She still shrieks at me when I open the back door or when we use the grill. She remembers my efforts to destroy the nest she was building on the boat roof years ago.
This whole week they have been sitting together on the nest except when one goes off for food. Tedious and bored they seem at this time in the season, waiting. They stare at each or look off into space for predators or are daydreaming. I can imagine him arriving at her side and asking "Ovulating yet?" Her response, "Nope." He then stares at her a while longer wondering about the mysteries of the female of the species or hoping his sexy presence will speed the process before he finally goes off fishing like most males. (I will keep you posted if I see them starting their family.)
Mankind is learning more about these fish hawks and their amazing migration and you can go to this link to learn about the data that has been collected from the backpacks that some of them now wear.