Sunday, August 29, 2010


You can learn a lot from birds
You can learn a lot from birds
But, the meaning is not obvious
- Frank Tedesso

I was silently motoring BIANKA up Mattituck Inlet the other day here on the Isle of Long. Looking and listening to the sounds as I made the journey. Since I converted to electric propulsion I am really enjoying such trips. You can actually hear the things going on around you instead of being masked by the noise and vibration of a diesel engine. The laughter of children at a house on the shore or squawk of a Great Blue Heron as it questions a Night Heron that he thinks might be in his territory. About three quarters of the way up to the anchorage. I heard the calling of an Osprey. It's good to see the Osprey still around. It means it's still summer. If you want to find a real snow bird the Osprey might fit that bill. They don't stay around much after September in these parts but, head south much like the Osprey in the photo above which I took on a small motu in Belize.  As I passed the tree to the boats port where I heard the call I could see there was not one but, two Osprey and they seemed to be alternating  in making the calls. Strange I thought Osprey usually mate for life and each of these birds were no more than ten feet from each other. Why are they alternating making the calls when they can obviously see each other? As I motored onward a  little ways the answer became obvious. Off to starboard  was an Osprey nest with three young adult Osprey posed and waiting. They were full feathered and seemed anxious and hesitant at the same time. It then dawned on me that the parents were the birds I heard calling from the tree. They were trying to coax the young birds to fly and leave the nest. It was time for them to fly in preparation to leave the nest for good and start heading south.  The next morning I was having my coffee. I saw an Osprey on the shore nearby. Strange I thought. I have never seen an Osprey walking along on the shore before. I've seen them in trees, on the nest or flying. Then the bird waded into the water until it's legs were underwater. Then I realized it was one of the  young Osprey literally getting it's feet wet for the first time. It seemed to be exploring the feeling and then one of the adult Osprey did several fly bys and the Osprey in the water flew off to follow. When I was leaving later that day I passed the same Osprey nest and there was only one young Osprey left there waiting to fly.
Yes, you can learn a lot from birds

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