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Live Chat with Dr. Rob Bierregaard 7/25!

Tomorrow, July 25th, we are pleased to host a live chat with Dr. Rob Bierregaard at 1 pm PT/ 4 pm ET! Dr. Rob Bierregaard will be here to answer all your osprey related questions live!

Please make sure you submit any/all questions that you have directly on this blog post to ensure that we are able to send them to Dr. Bierregaard.

Once we are live, you will be able to watch here!

Having trouble submitting your question below? You can also submit your question through this form as well!

  • seagee

    Hello. I thought I had posted my question a couple of hours ago, but it’s gone. So here it is:

    We have noticed Rachel’s adaptive behavior since the owl attacks. Do you think we will see signs of this next season? Do you think that Bailey will be a more alert/defensive/fierce predator because of what’s happened here? Thanks, Cheryl Gaston

    • https://allowlive.com/floyd-mayweather-vs-conor-mcgregor-live-stream/ mcgregor vs mayweather free

      Please make sure you submit any/all questions that you have directly on this blog post to ensure that we are able to send them to Dr. Bierregaard.

  • Rysx

    Few days ago, after one of GHO’s attack, Rachel was trying to push Bailey off the nest while Bailey resisted, obviously. How to explain Rachel’s behavior?

  • Eileen Stokes Jones

    It does appear that Baileys right wing, the lower section, hangs and is dragged. I know that Bailey is spreading both wings but only for a few seconds. It does appear injured. What are your thoughts and if there is damage to small bones or tissue, what affect on feather growth and wingersizing and eventual fledging. Will Rachel leave before Bailey fledges?

  • Teezee

    If Bailey can’t fly and the wing doesn’t get better to that point, would you intervene to repair the wing?

    • Lana

      I also would like to know!

  • kemahbreeze

    We have seen osprey nests fail this year due to weather, particularly because storms prevented ospreys from being able to fish. Such a narrow pescavore diet seems to put them at an evolutionary disadvantage, although perhaps it does keep them from competing with other raptors for food. In a pinch, do ospreys ever resort to preying on other animals (e.g., smaller birds, rodents, insects) for food if they are unable to catch fish?

  • Tweetylady

    I have a general question: are there researchers (for instance, grad students in ornithology or ethology) who use the footage from live cams as a source of primary data to study Osprey’s behavior? I would think that it is a great source of information about what really happens in the wild…

  • ple

    What might explain the GHO’s ongoing attacks? It strikes me that most predators will find the least resistant prey in order to conserve energy, maximize natural resources, etc. And yet the GHO continues to return. Is there a shortage of small mammalian prey, for instance, due to climate changes? Or, is my above assumption simply off, and once a GHO has a potential prey, it continues to try to obtain it?

  • Cheltie

    We’ve recently seen just how limited Rachel’s night vision is with her inability to ascend to her perch or descend from there to the nest. Given that, it seems like reckless disregard for her own safety that propels her into the darkness to defend her chick or to remain in the nest close to the chick rendering her talons fairly useless. While some view this as adaptive and a positive thing, it seems rather maladaptive in terms of overall survival of this nest and its ‘warrior mom’. Thoughts? Also, many seem to believe that if Bailey fledges she’d be safe. Won’t she still be in significant danger from the owl as an inexperienced flier as well as if she’s on the ground or in another tree? Thanks for all your expertise!

  • harry bono

    I’ve noticed that when Bailey spreads her wings the last joint of that wing doesn’t extend out like her left wing, could it be a joint problem and not a break? Also, could it just be a mussel injury and how long to recover if it is?
    Will anyone intervene if she’s not showing signs of improvement in the next couple weeks?

  • Pat

    I also hope that you would intervene if necessary to fix Bailey’s wing. Most nests I watch do intervene, for example, to free a leg and claw that are stuck in a tree branch or to remove fishing line from a claw, rather than letting the baby bird suffer and die. Given that people have already intervened here by building the nest, banding the chicks, and posting the osprey cam, it would seem humane and appropriate to assist Bailey if necessary for him to survive. Thank you.

    • Cynthia Baughan

      Pat I wish I had read you question before I posted mine. I looked up the bone structure of the wing and it appears to be the metacarpal that is affected to me and I believe it is broken. I also wonder if they will continue to be non interventionists if this is the case since a broken bone can heal potentially if intervention is immediate.

  • Marlene

    There has been much speculation here about why Steve doesn’t defend the nest at night or come to defend it when Rachel gives an alarm call. We no longer believe that ospreys can’t fly at night! :-) A comment from Steve Kress earlier in the month was that Steve (the bird!) is not even close to the nest at night. Chat-ers have pointed out other male osprey which do stay at the nest. Is this behavior specific to each individual bird? Is there something considered to be “normal” nighttime behavior in male ospreys?

  • Marlene

    The changes in Rachel this year are almost unbelievable. She seems willing to risk her own life to protect Bailey’s, attacking an owl repeatedly at night, and spreading her wings over Bailey to stop her from spreading her wings at night. Please comment.

    • Lana

      The very first instinct is the instinct of self-preservation … the second continuation of the genus! Rachel changed this order! …

  • scruzie

    One night after chasing a threat (owl not observed), Rachel had trouble re entering nest, due to a stick diagonally projecting from nest to limb, and clung to far side of nest until able to fly and find a landing spot. The following day it seemed as though she was picking at diagonal stick and trying to remove it. Does this show some memory/thought process re cause and effect or was she just picking at it as it was at eye level? Also, even though she is larger than Bailey, isn’t her safety at risk from both the owl at night and eagles during the day (as we saw the attack last year)? One last question….any sighting of the young ospreys from last year or finding their bands. thanks.

  • deb

    if for some reason bailey is unable to fledge because of hurt wing will they be able to retrieve her to get help .it maybe possible the lower part of her wing might be hurt i have notice it is drooping a bit plus if the owl stuck its claws in her wing would it get a infection in it

  • Laura

    The last few days it seems that the nest has been fortified with new sticks. Some of the sticks seem to be pointing upward at various intervals…is this a new osprey tactic to reduce the owl’s angles of attack? IN the same vein, on another night, Rachel was seen trying to cover Bailey with moss, but it fell off, and she stopped. Domospreys camouflage their young to protect them?

  • Shelli Fugit Simon

    Question many of our Facebook group members want to know:
    What are your thoughts on why Rachel attacked Bailey?

  • Melissa Anne

    Hi Dr. B! I’m Naturelvr on the chat. We are seeing behavior from Rachel unlike any we’ve seen in past seasons. Is it possible that this is an example of evolutionary adaptation that might be passed down to Rachel’s future generations of offspring? I don’t know if you or any other researcher has documented this adaptive behavior in response to nocturnal predation in another Osprey.

    • ~ lalabnkr

      nautrelvr..I will not be able to watch tomorrow but posted a ?? for Dr B just down below..it is about the “decoy osprey” that they looked to create..if you listen in will you let me know if he answers it ..please,please..ty so much!!

      • Melissa Anne

        Absolutely la la! I want to know as well!!!

        • ~ lalabnkr

          TY.. :-)

    • LA

      Thats an excellent question Melissa Anne because I want to know the difference between learned and instinctual behavior

      • Melissa Anne

        I’m finding the behavior absolutely fascinating! I personally think it’s learned. Even her slowly making her way down the perch to the nest shows forethought.

        • LA

          I know and forethought means learned I think?!

          • Melissa Anne

            I will assume that in some ways yes.

          • LA

            But please share if you dont agree because is so fascinating I think

        • JoL13

          Have you read up on epigenetics.? It makes all of this behavior even more intriguing.

    • LA

      Naturelvr I am 100% caught between learned and instinctual behavior can you share with me evolutionary adaptation and how it is passed down. Many thanks

      • Melissa Anne

        LA, I’m not a biologist but using Rachel as an example, the process of adaptation would show that she has adapted her behavior in such a way that she has been able to better protect Bailey from the owl. When it worked the night after the owl attacked Bailey, she continued using it. Her previous behavior of staying on the perch no longer worked, so she adapted it. If she continues to do so successfully, she may pass this new behavior down to successive generations and through natural selection, you would eventually see the Osprey evolve. This is a very poor explanation! But you get the drift.

        • LA

          I am not a biologist either but I hear you loud and clear. Maybe Doc B can give us few tips on how to define these different behaviors so we may better understand.

    • Beverly E. Johnson

      If Rachel is exhibiting a new behavior, it is either a behavioral adaptation which she has newly learned (not genetic) or it is an instinctual behavior (genetic) which was already in her genetic repertoire to perform, but which prior to this time has not been exhibited because circumstances didn’t call it forth. If it was a behavioral adaptation which she learned, what she could pass on (or possibly what she has always passed on) to her chicks would be the genetic inclination or propensity to learn new adaptive behaviors–not the learned behavior itself specifically. An osprey without the genetic ability to learn new adaptive behaviors might not, in this scenario, have learned to protect her chicks, so her genetic line of chicks could conceivably be wiped out, whereas Rachel’s chick generations might have higher survival. On the other hand, if this specific behavior was genetically and hence instinctually in her behavioral repertoire, even though not previously elicited, that too could be passed on to her chicks. Whether it is a universal instinctual osprey behavior may not be ascertainable. I think that there have not been enough osprey nests attacked by owls on a running sequence of nights, in which videos were also made to document behaviors, to conclude definitively that Rachel “learned” something or whether an instinctual behavioral nest/chick protective mechanism was elicited and documented perhaps for the first time. If Rachel did exhibit a newly learned behavior, I’m not sure what could be said about her remaining chick learning that new behavior for itself, by observing the mother. I’m not sure to what extent ospreys can or do learn by observation. Chimps, for example, learn how to retrieve termite ants with a stick as a poker, by observing other chimps do it. I had a mockingbird around my yard who always came to perch nearby when a lawnmower was started up, and he/she would hop down to catch disturbed grasshoppers as mowing was done. I presume this was learned behavior somehow, and I’ve always wondered if her/his offspring around the yard would learn that behavior!

      • Melissa Anne

        This makes a great deal of sense Beverly. Thank you for your excellent explanation!!!

        • Beverly E. Johnson

          Hello Melissa, Your initial question was very thought provoking and brought forth a good discussion. I’m still waiting (and hoping) that the Expert addresses it, because I think Kress (?) mentioned that Rachel might have “learned” an adaptive behavior.

  • ~ lalabnkr

    Do you think that Rachel/Steve are showing “defensive behaviors” or are we just romanticizing when it appeared that they created a “decoy” osprey in the nest on the days following the attacks..

  • deb

    if bailey has injured wing or joint in the wing or infection wouldn’t be better to have it checked out as soon as possible to fix the damage before they get worse if that is the case

  • Snowbird17

    Do you think the swarm of bees could have caused the wing injury, and eventually it will heal

  • Just Romie

    Will the danger of attack by an owl, or any other type of flying predator, lessen or be even greater when Bailey fledges? Will she be safer because she can fly or will she be more vulnerable flying around the area alone? Thank you.

  • Marge

    Will Rachel stay with Bailey if she takes longer than usual to fledge or will Steve be left in charge

    • Orabilis

      I also was wondering about the prognosis for Bailey’s fledging — will it be a bit longer due to her wing injury?

  • Sharon

    Hi Dr Rob – two questions: 1) why doesn’t Steve help defend his nest at night (you’d think he can hear Rachel’s distress calls), and 2) what do you think happened when Rachel was overly aggressive with Bailey after one of the owl attacks? She had to know it was her baby, right? Thank you!

    • Orabilis

      I was wondering about that, too. Too dark for mom to see her youngin? and mistaking the little tyke for a killer?

  • LA

    Dr. B. My question is about instinctual behavior vs learned behavior. It appeared that Rachel anticipated the GHO return 2 nights ago whereby she attacked the GHO before it attacked the nest as if she were awaiting its return ie learned behavior? How can that anticipated behavior be labeled instinctual behavior since it appears she is on high alert anticipating the return of the GHO. I would like to really delve deep and understand the true difference between learned behavior and instinctual behavior. Thanks

  • Sammie

    Rob, I’m also wondering why Steve hasn’t responded to Rachel’s calls and the chicks screams? Is he so far away he can’t hear? The male at Boulder nest has always slept on the perch at night; is this behavior individual with each male or do most males roost at night far from the nest?

    • Orabilis

      That’s a good question. I notice that at the Dunrovin Cam in Lolo MT that it’s often both parents who rest/sleep perched during the night — ensuring maximum protection against the owls nearby. This is the case often also at Charlo.

    • luvwild1s

      It’s interesting to learn (from a comment by Orabilis, below) that nests other than Boulder County Fairgrounds nest have both parents sleeping at night on perches that are there at the nest itself, or very close to it. Wondering if there were, perhaps, more perch options at the HI nest, would Steve would stay there more? I, too, am curious about where he goes at night!

  • Cynthia Baughan

    I am concerned as an observer, that Bailey has broken her right metacarpal bone the way she is holding it or rather the way the wing flops around at the tip. Since breaks need immediate attention will it be the decision of Explore to allow the break to go unattended if she has a broken bone? I know that they have strict non-interventionist policies so I feel I know the answer.

    • ~ lalabnkr

      Not that I am answering for Dr B..but to part of the question..I think it would be Audubon decision not an Explore decision….also..I am interested in the answer as well :-)

      • Cynthia Baughan

        Thanks lala

        • Cynthia Baughan

          I edited it..does it appear correct now?

      • LA

        Because as I delve deeper into this site it is also an Audubon site???

        • ~ lalabnkr

          the nest is located on Audubon property..explore only operates the cam on the nest.

          • LA

            Thanks lalabnkr

    • cmolander

      The nest is a man-made structure, thus intervention to check Bailey’s wings before she tries to fledge should be done. She could die from a fall, or drowning, if unable to fly if her wing is compromised.
      Do you agree that this nest is not a natural nest, but a man-made nest and thus man has intervened in the osprey’s life.

      • equinance

        I think “if” that bone is indeed broken, in the wild the chick will have zero chance of fledging, and its demise will ultimately come, unless there’s intervention. I imagine this scene is played out at hundreds of nests we humans never see, and nature takes its course. We are privileged observers being allowed an “invisible” (to the ospreys) window to their world. I am hoping it’s a badly bruised wing and not broken, but that’s only a hope, not an educated observance.

        • Lana

          I also think so, thanks …

      • luvwild1s

        I’ve wondered the same. Hope this observation/opinion that we’re already intervening by erecting nest sites, by banding young Osprey, and by intervening if a man made item poses a threat, is addressed by Dr. B. These things are done TO HELP THE OSPREY SUCCEED in increasing their numbers. To many, it seems like assisting in other ways (injuries, dehydration, supplementing food, etc.) is just another way of trying to help Osprey succeed in raising a new generation of offspring. I don’t think anyone’s trying to challenging the policies of this site … just trying to reconcile what seems to be a contradiction within those policies and would like clarification:)

  • LA

    I dont think most birds can see at night

  • OLDinAM

    A message for Explore: During the naming contest lots of people on the chat said they could not log into this blog. For some reason these folks can’t set up or use a disquis account that is required to post on this blog. Will the regular chat reopen in time for them to put questions there or is there another route they can use to get their questions here?

  • LA

    When Rachel was jumping Bailey after the GHO attack she was highly agitated is there an explanation for that?

  • Betty Manning VanHouten

    Dr how much better eye sight does the owl have than Rachel she chased him off but then had trouble Landing in the nest I know she can detect the owl by sound

  • Julia Glueckauf Gray

    Maybe this question was posed earlier, but after the attacks, we observed Rachel bring some moss to the nest in what appeared as an attempt to shield or cover the remaining, chick, Bailey. Is this a typical behavior or did Rachel discover a new method of protection?

    • luvwild1s

      And didn’t Dad do something similar? I thought there were 2 instances of this … ?

      • Julia Glueckauf Gray

        Possibly! I missed that part! Thanks!

  • Colorado Girl

    Hi, Rob. Why did Bailey not receive a Darvic band? Thanks, Colorado Girl

    • Marlene

      The person who came to band only had one rivet left! The band needs two.

  • Teacup

    If Bailey survives and has young will she use learned tactics from her mother to protect her young? ( I guess I’m asking nature or nurture?)

    • seagee

      I’ve already asked that one, teacup.

      • Teacup

        sorry seagree…I hadn’t realized

        • ple

          Really great question — thanks to you both for asking it.

          • Teacup

            thank you :) I’m just sorry I didn’t see seagee’s question first

          • ple

            Oh, we’ve all done that. I wish I had thought of what you both were thinking.

          • Teacup

            thank you :)

          • seagee

            No problem teacup!

          • Teacup

            hugs thank you

  • Marlene

    What do you think the bald spot is on Bailey’s breast?

  • Ranger

    Dr. B., how much of a threat would a GHO be to Rachel? As an ambush attacker might an owl go after Rachel as well as her chicks?
    Also wondering if human intervention, in placing and guarding artificial nest sites in the 70s, which has been largely responsible for the osprey population bouncing back, might not have been too successful. Perhaps there are more osprey in some areas than there should be.
    Finally wondering if osprey might choose more protective nest sites than the man made ones that are offered to them, or would the threat from predation be the same in the natural world.
    Thanks for your thoughts

    • Michele Pohl

      I’ve seen many Osprey nests on top of pilings and streetlights here in Florida. I often wonder how safe they are from the elements of nature and prey, but this is where they choose to build them.

      • Ranger

        Thanks, that’s interesting.

  • sassfb

    After the first GHO attack, people were saying that an osprey has no defense against a great horned owl. Apparently no one told Rachel that, because she has been doing a great job. Is it unheard of or very unusual for an osprey to thwart GHO attacks the way Rachel has been doing? Thanks!

    • Lady_Penguin

      We love that “our” Rachel is exceeding all expectations of osprey motherhood! She might be rewriting the scientific journals all by herself! :)

  • Elaine Steele

    If your group choses not to help Bailey, what are her chances of fledging or even surviving? Would you possibly re-consider intervention due to the out pouring of concern for this osprey who has endured so much pain in such a short time on this earth. She can be helped. I am sure no one would criticize anyone for helping Bailey. In fact, an huge number of watchers would be grateful for your compassion. Every life is important, even that of an osprey. Speaking from my heart and moral conscience.

    • Michele Pohl

      Elaine, I feel the same.

    • Lana

      Everyone would like to save Bailey, including me. But for some reason I am sure that we need to give birds a chance to solve their problems on their own. Let’s remember the last season, it was also very disturbing for us, but the birds coped!

  • Bird Brain

    Could Rachel’s adaptation to the owl attacks have been accelerated by her experience with losing chicks to eagle predation in 2015 and 2016?

    Also, it has been suggested that this year’s GHO is a young bird. Do you think that’s the case?

    Thank you for doing the chat and for your patience with us as we learn!

  • Carol Arnold

    People assume that the osprey can’t see at night…….but owls are silent flyers and she was after that owl the other night before it got to the nest. And she chased it off. Please explain.

  • Carol Lane

    Since many birds fly at night (we see them in the nest cam), why is it assumed that ospreys can’t see at night (though, obviously, not as well as owls).
    Thank you!

    • Cheltie

      On which nest cam(s) do you see ‘many birds flying at night’? I’d love to check it out!

      • Carol Lane

        Hog Island Audubon cam, Bremen, ME. There’re mostly flashing across screen, so rather a blur.

    • Steener317

      could you possibly be seeing bats?

      • Carol Lane

        Maybe, but think they’re too large.

    • luvwild1s

      Bats! Or, nighthawks?

  • Bill D

    I am also curious as to why the mother would apparently attack the chick as she did after the GHO attack. The chick was screaming, so I assume the mother knew it was the chick she was attacking. Thanks for your time and interest!

    • Jane

      She wasn’t attacking Bailey, she was trying to quiet her down in case of another attack, because as soon as she quieted down , Rachel sat beside her. I think Rachel was also trying to get Bailey to pancake.

      • Carol Lane

        It was a prolonged attack, or beating, with her wings, during which the chick was being forced to the edge of the nest. I believe this pummeling terrified the chick as much as the original attack by the GHO, so she continued to screech.

        • luvwild1s

          Thank you, and agree. I only watched that video once, and do NOT want to watch it again, but remember that, at the time, I thought there was some use of her talons as Rachel (seemingly) forced Bailey to the edge of the nest. I’ve wondered if that onslaught (in addition to the GHO attack, of course) has contributed to the wing problem we’ve been seeing. Again, I’m eager to hear Dr. Bierregaard’s opinion about this incident:)

          • Carol Lane

            I think it likely that the chick was at least bruised by Rachel’s attack, but I’m hoping that Dr. Bierregaard will be able to enlighten us as to whether or not this type of manic behavior on the part of a female parent has previously been observed.

      • luvwild1s

        Were hoping Dr. B. can give up his professional and expert opinion about what certainly seemed like Rachel’s attack on Bailey. Until then, NONE of us watchers could possibly know why this dramatic behavior occurred. It did seem obvious, though, that Bailey was terrified by her mother’s treatment of her. It was really difficult to watch. I know we’re all eager to hear from Dr. B. on this subject!:)

  • Beverly E. Johnson

    When subjected to stress, human children regress or revert to an earlier stage of behaviors, for example, a potty trained infant will start wetting again. Dogs also will regress behaviorally from stress. What about ospreys? Could Bailey’s trauma have caused some degree of regression. Thanks.

  • Laurie Fernandez

    It looks like Bailey has some sort of wing disability. What can be done if a decision is made to assist? Also, Bailey is displaying unique vocalizations, that sound more like she is hoarse. Please advise. Thanks. Laurie

  • Laura

    If the GHO was in the vicinity when the chicks first hatched, was Rachel more at risk herself for an attack at that time because she had to stay on the nest to keep the chicks warm?

  • Carter58

    Has an osprey ever been known to fight off a GHO?

  • marcey s

    i was both fascinated and awestruck on the 21st combined attacks.. it was my understanding that although rachel and steve will always protect the nest and chicks that if it was a life threatening altercation that they would back down, but when faced with a known Superior predator such as the great horned owl and a persistent one at that, rachel not only engaged in combat with him but chased him down and in some cases actually pursued him on another occasion… is this normal behavior by a osprey mother or is she simply the warrior mom that we see her as. or is this a newly fledged owl and rachel was aware of this… he didnt look new the way he was sitting in the all creepy.

  • TerryLee/Florida

    Dear Dr. Bierregaard, In 2016 Steve brought 714 fish to the nest during July, averaging over 23 fish per day. I have noticed that Steve is no longer bringing in this amount of fish. Even with two less mouths to feed this year, the difference is extreme. Has this lack of fish been witnessed at the other osprey nests in the area, or is it possible that the GHO attack has affected Steve in some ways not so obvious to us? Thank you.

  • Linda Nasato

    Dr B…Global warming has already or will have negative impact on all birds and animals and I know there are some such as small mountain mammals that may become exinct. Since ospreys/fish hawks are the most widely distributed raptor globally I’m hoping you can address the impact of global warming on the osprey population here in North America and globally. Thank you in advance for your expert opinion.

  • MicheleH92

    My husband mentioned, can birds and owls see infrared lights and could it be attracting them?

    • Susan

      Very interesting.

    • Steener317

      Is anything known about other osprey nests in the area that don’t have cams and infra red lights on them – are GHO’s attacking those nests also

      • Lady_Penguin

        We don’t have any cams on the 9 osprey nests, Great Dismal Swamp, Tidewater, Virginia and GHOs have been taking the chicks.

        Wonder if there has been an increase of the GHO population?

  • Dan Small

    There have been so many GHO attacks on the osprey nests this season, including the one in Belwood lake, in Ontario Canada. Is there any explanation as to why?

    • Lady_Penguin

      Yes, down here in Virginia, The Great Dismal Swamp, has 9 osprey nests, and it’s been reported that GHOs took a toll on the osprey chicks.

  • Susan

    What if we are not available for the live chat??

    • Regina from Hamburg

      There will be a recording, Susan. You can watch it later.

      • Susan

        Thank you.

  • Susan

    It sounds like hail and Bailey is in the nest alone or Rachel is not in the view of the camera.
    I thought the comment about the infared light to be interesting bad maybe a possibility.

  • Susan

    Is there a reason that Steve is hardly at the nest? It seems strange if they are a couple.

  • Jill Cole

    Great questions…many of mine tho some were answered as I was in the Raptor Rapture session when the first 2 chicks were taken. I do hope there will be a recording for those of us at work who can not hear the session live. Thanks for doing this.

  • http://www.lenagh.nl Maddi

    Hi Dr B. We all wondered about Rachel’s behavior towards Bailey after fending off the GHO attack. Here is a summary of the posted ideas about it:
    She was trying to force Bailey to keep quiet and pancake
    She was trying to force Bailey to stand on the edge of the nest like an adult osprey
    She ‘smelled owl’ on Bailey and thought Bailey was an owl.
    She was protecting Bailey
    She was protecting the nest, even at the expense of Bailey
    She was making a commotion to keep the owl away
    She was in a fighting frenzy and would attack anything near her at that moment.

    Could you please comment on your experience with and insight in this behavior?

    • connien

      Nice summary. Thank you Maddi….

    • equinance

      All my thought/questions too. Thank you.

  • http://www.lenagh.nl Maddi

    Dr B, we’ve been witnessing Rachel change her approach to defending the nest which has now resulted in her successfully defending the last chick against the GHO. What does this say about the experiential learning capacity of Ospreys?

    • http://www.lenagh.nl Maddi

      Apologies, I just saw that LA asked the same question below.

  • Guerra Creative

    hello Dr. Rob Bierregaard 3 questions please.
    1. has there been any video recording before of osprey female like Rachel being able to adapt the situation n work out strategy to take on GHO & attack him forcefully when her baby chick get’s attacked .this normal for ospreys to be this smart & diligent or is she just extremely brave to the extreme. or its just she lost 2 babies & hey your not taking my last one .
    2. the last 2 days Rachel has been just taking off alert calling across the bay
    ( more then ive noticed before ) do you think she has sense there’s bald eagle across there because she remember’s the trauma of last year or is it just heron or osprey she is chasing … or is she just more alert because of the GHO attack’s
    3. when Rachel migrants would bailey go with her or if by Chance she would run into ” bailey ” would she recognize her spend time with her .. its just they been through so much together hard to believe they would never see each other again .. ” just for future reference maybe should put those monitor devise on both to see if mother & offspring are together somewhere in time .
    thanking you in advance.

  • Marlene

    When Rachel chased the owl before it even got to the nest a couple of nights ago, how did she know it was there and where it was? What we saw on IR was the owl flying towards the tree, almost there, when Rachel took off after it. New moon, so no discernable light, and silent-flying owl so no discernible sound?

  • Geraldine

    Would it be a better idea to bring this nest down since its way out in the open to avoid any attacks? It’s hard on the babies and especially the mother, Rachel.

  • Gailh

    A couple of things. I live in Richmond, CA and have been watching the cam there. The father of the fledgling Rivet stays close by the mother, and they BOTH watch over the chick. Why doesn’t Steve do this? Also, when the other chick Whirley was rescued from the bay, she was taken to Wildcare where they were prepared to intervene if her injuries hadn’t been so severe, even though the injuries were NOT the result of humans. So why not help Bailey?

  • Reese

    I just need to know, is Bailey going to be ok? Will she recover from all of this? Her wing, being stung, attacked by GHO… She seems so strong, just like her mom.

  • Reese

    Is there a better way to track the young birds than just banding? I’d love to see Bailey as a mom somehow to see if she repeats Rachel’s new protection behavior.

  • Dorothy

    I was noticing today that Rachel left the nest many times for many minutes at a time. I hated to see Bailey alone in the nest without protection. I couldn’t see any reason or hear any reason for Rachel’s patrols. Any idea what she was doing? Thanks

    • Marlene

      Me, too, especially yesterday (7/23) when she left for almost 1-1/2 hours. Did anyone at the camp see her or know where she was?

      • Dorothy

        I guess this and other burning questions will, hopefully, be answered today. I can’t wait for them to turn the chat back on as it’s the only way I can find out how things are going without watching 24/7. Yawn!

  • Marlene

    Thank you for removing the yellowjacket nest.

  • disqus_ugdPhSFfmO

    Number 1:
    Rachel putting her life at risk–by remaining on the nest at night guarding, instead of the possible advantage of launching from the perch–is interesting. Please give us your thoughts about how this relates to an adult Osprey’s “survival” imperative.

    Number 2:
    Regarding Osprey that normally migrate, do they ever migrate before the time frame of the nesting season is over? Or is their internal timeclock weather-guage set to go off at a certain point to trigger the migration?
    Expanding on this subject I want to ask (and maybe it can’t be known), but until that migration urge kicks in, do they always stay very close to the original territory they claimed or were trying to claim, even after they experienced an unsuccessful nesting season of some kind? For example the Osprey at the Aububon Boat House nest. (I think they haven’t been seen on the nest for a month or more. Could they still be nearby or do they roam?)

    Thank you for sharing your extensive knowledge with us, and for your patience!

  • Carrie Leahy Monahan

    Dr. B., if Bailey does migrate later than expected, do you think Rachel will stay with her due to the bond that has appeared to develop between them? I know that it is usually the males who stay with the fledglings until they are ready to leave, but this seems to be an unusual case. Thank you.

  • Lana

    Do you think, dear Dr. Rob Bierregaard , was it a mistake to build platforms for nests near large trees, both in Belwood and in Hog Island? In the end, the construction of platforms for nests in wooded areas can be considered as the forced migration of birds to an inappropriate place for them? Thank you in advance for your response!

  • Regina from Hamburg

    Hi Rob! When migrating, ospreys fly during the night, occasionally. Moreover, I remember at least 4 occasions when ospreys caught fish during the night (Nelson, BC; Chesapeake and Steve on this nest). Even during New Moon. Can you tell us a bit more about their night vision. Thank you!

  • Regina from Hamburg

    on behalf of Lady Miris:
    “The only question I have
    regards the nest down in Orange Beach Alabama. Josie and Elbert.
    This my second season with them and I wondered what Dr. B knows and thinks
    about the extreme sibling rivalry between the second hatch (now fledgling)
    against the “baby”. Baby is missing all but one tail feather
    and a number of wing feathers that appears to be delaying fledging.
    “Psycho” sibling (my words) not only steals food (not unusual)
    but literally attacks the baby pulling out feathers. I have witnessed
    Baby trying to defend herself more recently. Parents try to keep baby fed
    but there appears to be little they can do to otherwise intervene.
    Chatters there are also badgering The Nature Conservancy to intervene.
    Dr. Greene in Montana says it takes a month for feathers to grow out.”

    • Deane GA

      Same as Deane GA

  • MAB

    After the birds have been banded, under what circumstances will you hear where they are? Have you heard anything about any of them?

  • Regina from Hamburg

    on behalf of GAngel:
    “Hello Dr. Rob, thank you having this Q and A session, I appreciate your time. Last night in watching the nest cam, I witnessed Rachel fly off the nest chasing after the owl and shortly there after I heard a extremely loud bang, Rachel did return to the nest shortly after this sound, is it possible the owl being chased by Rachel collided with something and possibly could have died from an impact. Also In viewing the videos of what seemed like Rachel attacking Bailey on the nest after the owl attack,I watched it in freeze frame style and I could see Rachel not attacking Bailey as it seemed but instead reaching over her and lunging toward the outside of the nest as if the owl where there, have you also observed the video in this same way and seen this also ? Thank you.”

  • Lady_Penguin

    I understand that osprey build their nests high, out in the open, and it’s done “because” of their large wing span. It seems to me eagles would have the same problem, but their nests don’t appear so open and vulnerable to predators. What is the difference on this vulnerability for the osprey?

    Thank you for everything you (and your fellow conservationists) do for our wildlife.

  • Lily from CT

    Hi Rob…I just want to tell you how much I enjoyed this year’s Raptor Rapture week and meeting you, Steve, Iain and the rest of the wonderful staff. I came away from that experience with so much more knowledge and appreciation of Ospreys and other wildlife. Participating in the banding of the chicks was the highlight of the week. I hope to come to Hog Island again soon. Thank you! Susanna Shirlock

  • Lucie Blondin Pecor

    My question and I hope it has not been asked already is this- would Rachel and Steve ever relocate to a safer location if they keep feeling threatened?

  • Diana Lambertson

    If Rachel and Steve’s chicks were renested in the boathouse would they go to that nest and care for them there ?

  • Barbara

    Posting a few questions on behalf of Colleen Haberman:

    1. It seems to me that Rachel has had to be on alert almost 24/7. Can she physically keep this up or will tiny cat naps or hemispheric sleep be enough to keep her strength up?

    2. What is Steve’s role in protecting Bailey? Is it the male’s behavior to stay out of the fight and leave it to the larger female?

    3. How well does an injured wing heal? Good enough to fledge?

  • Deborah Fortin

    Last night Rachel moved Bailey closer to the perch makes it harder for her to be grabbed I think. Even a GHO needs room for its wings. Interesting move on. Would this be considered problem solving on her part? She seems to be trying different strategies to keep Bailey safe. Has this type of behavior been been noted before?

    Another series of questions…I am concerned about Bailey’s right wing droop. Will this impede her fleshing? How could this affect her chances for survival over the long term when she fledged? How could this possibly affect her ability diving/fishing abilities? Would there be an added the risk of injury to the wing when fishing if she cannot fold her wing correctly?

  • Berylann

    1. What will happen if Bailey can’t fly properly, she has a long journey ahead and will need two good wings ?
    2. Where is Steve when the GHO attacks, in the past he has been a good fighter but I did not see him at all this time ?
    3. Would moving the nest so it only had one entry way be harder for the GHO, it now knows where we are ?

  • Deborah Fortin

    Sorry. One more question.
    I have noticed osprey choose to nest out in the open, when they choose their own nesting sites (not platforms), whereas eagles choose trees. (I am asking this because there are so many comments about how the platforms are so out in the open.) Is the osprey’s choice of nesting site due to the way osprey learn to fly…wingercizing, helicoptering, and then finally taking a leap of faith, vs. the eagle who wingercize, branch, and then fledge?

  • Regina from Hamburg

    On behalf of Robinette:
    Hi, Rob. I was also one of your Raptor Rapture campers this summer, and it was terrific, thanks so much for all you showed us and taught us! I recall Iain saying that he had a great horned owl on his wrist once and that the grip was massive. I’m sure you’ve seen the videos of the owl getting a grip on Bailey and Rachel attacking it, forcing it to let go of Bailey, and that she followed this up with what appeared to be an attack of sorts on Bailey. What is your take on all of these events? Is it possible for Bailey to emerge from this completely unscathed, or are bruises and breaks to be expected? If so, and if that requires that she take longer than “normal” to heal well enough to fledge, can you reassure us that Steve will hang around until she is ready to go?

  • Regina from Hamburg

    On behalf of Sally M.:
    Hi Regina. Can you please ask how Rachel is able to stay rested during her nightly vigilance? How much sleep does she need? Thank you.

  • Regina from Hamburg

    On behalf of Darcy K.:
    Bailey’s right wing appeared to have been injured during the original owl attack. The day after the attack, it was droopy when folded next to her body, although she was able to move it and open it somewhat. To my observations, she has not been able to extend it as straight as the left wing since the owl attack. Her appetite is good and her demeanor is normal, but she has not been wingercizing or using her wings as she did before the owl attack. Here’s the question(s): While I know we can’t tell if something is broken or badly damaged without an exam and x-rays, and that removing her from the nest brings a whole set of risks, is there a wildlife rehab person/vet who could at least look at the video and give an opinion/ likelihood whether the injury is something that can heal on its own? Second, what if it doesn’t heal on its own and she is unable to fly? The injury was caused by a “natural” event, not a manmade problem, so is intervention forbidden?

  • Regina from Hamburg

    On behalf of Don S.:
    Considering the steady increase of raptors following the banning of DDT, how you think the Ospreys will manage when there are more and more avian predators? In the southern areas Ospreys have “banded” together to help protect their young. With the Ospreys in the northern parts of the country spread considerably thinner, do you think the Ospreys will be able to continue to maintain a healthy population?

  • Anna Sargent

    Could the problem with the yellow jackets be addressed, please. Some contraption to catch them, or perhaps a bird-harmless spray. Thank you.

  • http://batman-news.com/ Cameo

    AKA – Lyn Adair here! WHEN do fledglings start fishing for themselves? The 2-day-old fledgling *Whirley* at the San Francisco Bay nest was rescued from the bay water and reported as a “fishing attempt” accident. The fledgling had JUST enrolled in “flight-school” and was a novice flyer. I’m convinced that it was a wind-shear that slammed Whirley into the bay. From what I’ve read and witnessed via nest cams, Whirley was much too young to start fishing on his/her own.


    Is Bailey’s right wing okay? She seems to be favoring it.

  • Dh27705

    I’ve noticed that R & B appear to be using the perch and perch structure as a shield or at least something in the way from a straight on attack, Bailey is really hanging close to it. Have you noticed that too?

  • Regina from Hamburg

    On behalf of Joev:
    Good Afternoon Dr. B, There was extensive discussion on Rachel’s ability to see in the dark. Some said that she was flying blindly while others said that she has better night vision better than the GHO. Similarly, the Internet has a mixed bag of opinions with some experts saying ospreys have good night vision and fly at night. While it did take Rachel a couple of attempts getting back in the nest, she obviously wasn’t flying totally blind. What is your opinion on Osprey’s night vision?

  • Kristine Kimura

    Dr. Bierregaard, is it possible that Rachel and Steve are building a frustration nest (term used at another osprey cam) somewhere else?

  • suestar2300

    Hi Dr. B. Thank you for hosting this event today. I believe many of us would like to know where Steve is at night. Not just during the attacks. If he is close by, why doesn’t he help her fight? He is such a superstar Dad providing endless fish to his wife and kids but his absence is nerve wracking. Additionally, we are all very concerned about Rachel’s stress level. How do you think she is holding up? Is she getting enough rest during the day?

  • Chris

    Because the U.S. osprey population is increasing since the DDT ban, can we expect to see more osprey intrusion behavior to obtain prime territory?

  • DLionheart

    Hello everyone. I submitted via another form, in case it did not get through, I will post it here:

    Hello, I am SmokyMtnCreatureFan in Explore. First, thank you VERY much for this awesome live cam!

    Second, my question: Bear w/me as this writer builds up to my question. Unfortunately, we are all too aware of how some people can get extremely hateful re intervention demands. This then puts an indelible negative mar re even mentioning the word. Some live cams have simply shut down due the hatefulness some partake of and this is horrid indeed.

    We know humans are each somewhere, from one extreme on an emotional spectrum to the opposite, right? Okay. For me, and all others who are sensible, rational and experienced live critter cam watchers – we KNOW we do so at our own risk. Nature offers its’ splendor and its’ not so, the yin and the yang. So when offspring fight, parents attack young, attacks from intruders and predators, etc. occurs – this, we know is nature doing what it does. Intervention demands in those, and similar, instances are wrong. I’m sorry that cam owners have had to endure the wrath of those extremely irrational people.

    Here is my question, and yes, I am going to speak of the dreaded word “intervention”. IF Bailey’s wing heals and/or does NOT inhibit her pending fledge, then Amen! IF, however, we see this wing DOES prevent her from fledging – will you please then consider what we have seen, all over the world, and intervene? She could be taken to a rehab to see if wing can be helped along, leading to eventual freedom. Or, if the damage prevents her from flight, then she could be placed in sanctuary, cared for and poss. utilized for classroom education.

    I feel this – once we have become witness to any injured living being who needs our help, then yes, I do feel responsible. Sometimes we simply must do the right thing, even if it means letting go of previously held views on getting involved. Let us continue to enjoy this family, hoping that all will be well thereby making my request a moot point. I thank you again for all that you have done and all that you are doing. I thank you also for both sharing your experience and expertise, along w/sharing this splendid osprey family w/all of us. =)

  • seagee

    It appears the yellow jackets are back today! I hope Eric is there to try some other solutions. There must be another nest he missed. It’s just so painful to watch. Thanks

  • julia

    can u are u going to do anything about the wasps thanks

  • Melissa Anne

    Chatterer la la banker initially posted a question about what looked to be a decoy Osprey, but her question is now missing so I’m asking for her.

    Steve & Rachel brought bark and moss/seaweed to the nest and arranged what looked to everyone to be a decoy Osprey-like figure on the nest. It’s gone now, but did you see it and is it possible that they did so and not our collective imaginations or coincidence? Thank you!

    • Regina from Hamburg

      It is still there, 16 hours back, right above your evolutionary adaption question ;-))

      • Melissa Anne

        So strange Regina! I can’t see it on my computer! I just looked again!!!

        • Regina from Hamburg

          D acting up, occasionally ;-))

          • Melissa Anne

            Refreshed and now it’s back again!

  • Nilsa Guslawski

    If permanently injured, will they consider placing Bailey in a Sanctuary? Speaking from my heart and animal lover. Thank you!

  • Andee in SC

    Good afternoon. I live on the South Carolina coast and have seen osprey in every month except February. Possibly, I’ve just missed them during that month because I work during daylight hours and don’t get outside as much. Do you think it is possible that like Florida, we now have year-round osprey residents?

  • Diane730

    I’m very concerned about this nest and since it was put up by humans maybe it should be taken down. It has been attacked vigorously for years now and I’m not sure Rachel and Steve will move next year if its still there. I love watching this family but I would rather them be safe in another nest than be attacked again next year. Aren’t bee’s alone enough for Parents to abandon the nest?

    • Lana

      This blog is not for discussion, but I want to note the following: Your post is consonant with mine, it seems to me that the birds themselves must choose the place for the nest … for example, I see that the Estonian osprey built nests on separately standing trees …

  • DLionheart

    QUESTION TWO FOR “Dr. B.” (And my final question): Re Rachel’s behavior towards Bailey after owl attack.

    all. I just watched that video of owl attack again, the “slo motion”
    version, as it was titled. I muted volume as it’s heartbreaking to me to
    hear Bailey. It’s an incredible video and also, for some of us, very
    hard to experience. I choose to study it, as do some others, to try and
    make a layman’s decision re explanation.

    I do not believe Rachel was “confused”, mistaking Bailey for owl. Nor do
    I believe she thought owl was on other side of Bailey, (although I
    considered that possibility before watching slow motion). I also do not
    believe she was “attacking” Bailey.

    There are many who are making
    their own judgment calls as to what was actually going on there –
    however I do not think any one of us here can state w/utter certainty,
    the actual FACTS re what was happening there. Hence, I too await, and
    look forward to, Dr. B’s take on it.

    Several POSSIBILITIES come
    to my mind, every single time I watch it. These thoughts are only
    deepened after watching the slow motion film:

    1 = PERHAPS Rachel, in SUPER highly energized, protect/defense mode – wanted Bailey to “pancake” down NOW.

    = PERHAPS she wanted to push Bailey out of the nest which is clearly
    and repeatedly, the owl’s target. This would be a last resort, desperate
    mother’s attempt to save her last chick. If Bailey had fallen, she
    would live or die, we cannot be sure which.

    3 = PERHAPS mother was trying to get Bailey to fight back – Bailey MUST learn to fight/defend herself. Remote or absurd
    possibility? Who knows; I am not Rachel. However, this WOULD increase
    Bailey’s chance of survival indeed.

    It is clear to me, she was
    trying to do something, communicate something to Bailey, ALL out of a
    mother’s DESPERATE attempt to ensure her last chick’s survival.

    yes indeed, I do hope the good “Dr. B.” will grace us w/his take on
    Rachel’s behavior on that particular and horrific event.

    B.” – Could you please share w/us your esteemed take on what might have
    been happening there? Or, if you and your colleagues actually have a
    definitive explanation – would you please enlighten all of us? Thank you
    VERY much, in advance, for your time w/us today. =)

    Sincerely, SmokyMtnCreatureFan

  • Pat

    Me again. If you haven’t already done this, perhaps you could reach out to the American Eagle Foundation in Tennessee. They provide rehab for other birds, not just eagles, and they provide sanctuary for birds that cannot be reintroduced into the wild. I notice today that Bailey was feeding herself for a while so maybe she would be able to go there for evaluation and rehab. Thank you.

  • Sally Cersonsky

    When will Rachel quit feeding Bailey in order to force her to fledge? Bailey can not fledge due to its injuries and will not survive. Why won’t you rescue Bailey to give it a chance at survival? Are you considering destroying the nest? It’s not right watching young innocent birds get killed for the sake of studying predation.

  • Kathy Riggle Cook

    Why doesn’t Steve hang around the nest at night? You would think he would respond to Rachel’s alerts and swoop in to help.

  • Colorado Sister

    Please don’t post answers to questions that are being asked for Rob to answer! Thanks!

  • Pennalope 2 Illinois

    One thing I noticed was when Rachel was coming in fast at night she seemed to manage to find the perch O K, but when she was close in she did not seem to see as well. Could this have something to do with their great vision at a distance for fishing etc. PL2

  • Linda Lutzke

    What could possibly go wrong if you intervene when the situation becomes so desperate that death for the animal is the only alternative????

    • http://explore.org/ explore.org

      No more comments demanding intervention, please, or we will suspend your account.

  • Deane GA

    The only question I have is about the nest down in Orange Beach Alabama. Josie and Elbert. This my second season with them and I wondered what Dr. B knows and thinks about the extreme sibling rivalry between the second hatch (now fledgling) against the “baby”. Baby is missing all but one tail feather and a number of wing feathers that appears to be delaying fledging. “Psycho” sibling (my words) not only steals food (not unusual) but literally attacks the baby pulling out feathers. I have witnessed Baby trying to defend herself more recently. Parents try to keep baby fed but there appears to be little they can do to otherwise intervene. Chatters there are also badgering The Nature Conservancy to intervene. Dr. Greene in Montana says it takes a month for feathers to grow out. Thank again!

    • Cheltie

      Isn’t this a re-post from about 16 hrs ago?

  • Jeanie Higgins Hardman

    My question is about vocalizations. Do the vocalizations the Osprey makes when the GHO is present do anything to actually deter the GHO, or any other predator, for that matter? Could you talk a little more about vocalizations? Regular nest watchers know that they can often tell what’s going on at a nest simply by listening. How is that different, or similar, to what an Osprey mate hears?

    • Jeanie Higgins Hardman

      saying we know “what’s going on at a nest” is an overstatement, we are alerted that SOMETHING is going on… Is it the same for them?

  • Diana Lambertson

    Is there any correlation between excessive preening and fledging in Osprey chicks The amount of preening seems to intensify when they get close to fledging

  • NatureGoodnBad

    This nest has been an incredible ‘window’ into the highs and lows of raising osprey chicks.
    a) Just as it appears that Rachel has ‘learned’ how to better protect Bailey at night, do you think that Bailey too will take some life lessons from this experience if/when she matures and raises chicks herself?
    b) Are there any stats that show an osprey nest success rate when the female is 10yrs and younger as opposed to a more experienced female 11yrs and older?

  • Laura

    Is there an optimum range of wind speeds for osprey chicks to begin their helicoptering and eventual fledging? I would think that for wingercising they would prefer calmer conditions. I watched the chicks in Boulder briefly and one seemed to accidentally fledge due to a huge gust.

  • Jeanie Higgins Hardman

    Sibling rivalry, leading to death has been observed this year on more than one nest. I find it one of the most difficult things to watch, & avoid doing so, when warned. Can you shed any more insight &/or logic on to this subject, anything that might make it seem more acceptable, for lack of a better word, or lead to better understanding?

  • Poppy

    On behalf of Joev:
    Hi Dr. B, Watching Bailey today around 1:40, she did a beautiful full wing extension (have a great pic) without any problem. Would she be able to do this if she had a broken wing or injured joint?

  • carol

    Why do you continue to let Bailey suffer when it is obvious that her wing is injured? How is she suppose to be able to leave the nest?

    • http://explore.org/ explore.org

      Please, no more comments demanding intervention or we will need to suspend your account.

  • DLionheart

    Okay, that’s “nice” – my two questions have been deleted. Explanation please?

    • 2silence

      I see them! Maybe disqus is acting up again. They’re still there!

      • DLionheart

        REALLY???? Oh THANK YOU SO MUCH. And yes, I was yelling. LOL. I am so relieved. I can no longer see them and I keep refreshing… First, they were marked as “Spam”, so I clicked onto that…. Next, it stated they were awaiting approval. Finally, from my view, they were gone. Thank you so very much 2silence. Ironic, your name, in this instance. ROFL

    • Explore Blog

      We don’t know why they’ve been deleted! So sorry we are having some issues with Disqus today, please feel free to repost!

      • DLionheart

        Thank you VERY much – you are splendid! Perhaps it was bec they were long. Perhaps a Mod simply didn’t like my questions. (I make no accusations.) In any event – dare I post them again, when they could be deleted? They were there, for hours! Then flagged as Spam…then flagged as awaiting approval. Then, poof, gone.

        • Explore Blog

          We’ve been monitoring this thread and happy to hear any questions. On our end we have had A LOT of problems with disqus lately and think it might be a tech error. Feel free to repost, we would love to hear what you want to know!

          • DLionheart

            OMGoodness, your enthusiastic, warm welcome is refreshing indeed! Thank you. You can still see my two posts in my profile… I will re-post and hope for the best. I will also delete my part in this chat here – to free up the space. Thank you, thank you – for YOU! We need more just like YOU! =D

  • Laura K.

    Haven’t been in for a while. what are the other 2 young birds?
    I don’t believe they learn how to fly yet,

    • DLionheart

      Hi Laura – this is a blog to post questions for “Dr. B.” who will be coming to answer questions we have. He will be here 1pm PST, 4pm EST. They will then re-open the chat board at the Hog Island osprey live cam site for his Q and A session, as the chat there was closed. (Unfortunately, the two chicks were taken by an owl; there is one remaining chick.)

      • Explore Blog

        The chat board is now open! Feel free to chat away!

        • DLionheart

          WOW! Thank you so much!!! =D Hugs to you for all that you do! =D

  • Michelle Thackwray

    It appears that Rachel is modifying her night time positioning to protect Bailey. Are there other documented cases of Ospreys modifying behavior in response to threats?

  • http://www.wordofmouthtranscripts.com roses123

    Is Bailey behind in wingercizing? If so, what impact will that have on her fledging? Could it be an injury to her wing that’s preventing her from exercising her wings?

  • Explore Blog

    Hi Everyone!

    Thank you all for these great questions, we are trying our best to make sure Dr. Bierregaard gets every single one. We have a lot to go over during this chat and please note that Dr. Bierregaard’s time is very valuable.

    We are trying our very best to get every single question in front of Dr. B and answered so please refrain from any negativity if for some reason your question was not answered.

    Thank you all for being part of Explore and we thoroughly look forward to today’s chat!

    • julia

      please i hope its closed caption i am deaf

      • Explore Blog

        Hi Julia, we unfortunately don’t have CC but we are looking for kind volunteers who would be willing to transcribe the chat after it has posted!

        • DLionheart

          I would be willing – what would I need do? Watch the video of the Q & A, type it up and then what? =)

          • Explore Blog

            That would be wonderful, feel free to email social@explore.org to get more information!

        • julia

          thx u hope soon

  • lily

    Hi Dr. B. As you undoubtedly know we all have great love for Rachel and Steve and their offspring. Question: Do you think all the trials and tribulations Bailey endured for the past weeks and being an only chick will make her a SUPER osprey like Rachel? Will new chapters be written on how ospreys will take on GHOs to protect their nest and chick? Thanks.

  • ElizabethHRH

    I watch two nests in Massachusetts. Both pairs fledged two chicks last year. Both nests failed this season. What factors make 2017 a hard year for ospreys? Thank you for the cam and the opportunity to observe osprey life!

  • Poppy

    On behalf of AKinCo:
    1. do osprey ever lay a second egg batch if all chicks die before a certain age?
    2. are all male raptors smaller than their female partners?
    thanks you MODERATORS, other osprey folks, and especially dr. b!

  • Dawn Marie

    It’s been remarkable to watch Rachel seem to learn new things in her methods of protection…adding longer twigs, roosting closer and the art of disguise…curious will she take this knowledge and apply it next season…do you see Osprey often “learn and apply these learnings year over year?” Second…is the nest illuminated at night? hard to tell with night vision…if so wouldn’t that affect the likelyhood of predation?

  • Tom Sawyer

    Good afternoon Dr. Bierregaard. Concerning Baileys wing condition. Has a reasonable time limit been considered, that if full improvement in the injured wing is not observed, Bailey should be treated as any other injured animal and taken to a local wildlife center for treatment and rehabilitation? This would fall under injury and humane treatment circumstances and allow Audobon to break their coveted non interference policy. If this wing is not at or near 100% by the time of Baileys first flight/fledge it will very possibly result in extensive injuries. Or she would not survive it. Thanks for your response and time.

    • amcmahon

      I agree with this . Why wait for owl to get third helpings

      • Tom Sawyer

        amcmahon, thank you!

  • Martine Gavard

    Generally, after chicks migrate, how long will they stay south and when they come back do they always come back where they were born or would they, possibly, spot a better place on their way back or go further north… My point is that, if they do establish themselves around the same spot as their parents won’t that engender some inbreeding down the line? thank you!!

  • DLionheart

    QUESTION 1 of 2 from me (SmokyMtnCreatureFan):
    (Shortened version/long version can be seen by all in my profile)

    First, “Dr. B.” – thank you VERY much for this awesome live cam!

    I am going to “speak” of the dreaded word “intervention”. IF Bailey’s wing heals and does NOT inhibit her pending fledge, then Amen! Right here, right now – in MY opinion, it is looking in her favor. It seems to be getting better every day.

    IF, however, worse case scenario, EVENTUALLY we were to CLEARLY see this wing DOES prevent her from fledging – will you please then consider what we have seen, all over the world, and intervene? She could be taken to a rehab to see if wing can be helped along, leading to eventual freedom. Or, if the damage prevents her from flight, then she could be placed in sanctuary, cared for and poss. utilized for classroom education. Please – What are your thoughts on this? Thank you.

    • Nilsa Guslawski

      I did asked about a sanctuary as well should Bailey not heal and with time should she heal then release her to freedom. Please!

  • DLionheart

    QUESTION TWO for “Dr. B.” from SmokyMtnCreatureFan:

    (And my final question, again, short version)

    Re Rachel’s behavior towards Bailey after owl attack. I watched the “Slo Motion” (as it was titled) video of that particular owl attack again, VERY helpful to see.

    I, and many others, have our own theories as to possible explanations re Rachel’s behavior towards Bailey, after owl attacks. (Mine can be read in long version of my original post.)

    So yes, please – what is your esteemed take on what she was doing there? Thank you.

  • Hong

    Why did Rachel push and shove and bat Bailey after the owl attack?

  • http://www.wordofmouthtranscripts.com roses123

    Question from Moms71 — can’t be here for chat. She has noticed that while Bailey is stretching her wings frequently, she seems to have trouble tucking them back in properly. I think I might have noticed the same thing? Thoughts?

  • leese45

    Hello: Rob, will u be returning to Newfounland this year to band and with transmitters this year?, Thank you for all you do!! . Lisa from Newfoundland

  • matt johnson

    Does banding still yield any significant scientific info or is it pretty much just a dog & pony show to engage the public?

  • amcmahon

    From Boston I just got in so please forgive me if you have already answered . If Bailey is injured how long do you wait before you intervene ?

  • Malena Arango

    Hi Dr. B,
    Do Rachel and Steve migrate together or each one goes their separate ways and reunite next year?

  • Malena Arango

    If Bailey is successful and survive the next few days. is she going to do the long migration to South America ofrthe Caribbean?

  • Jane

    What happens after the migration – does Bailey come back to this area or will Steve and Rachel chase her away to protect their territory?

  • Judy Dobiesz

    what are the dimensions of a typical osprey nest? Thank you

  • Julin Lynn

    Is there a place that Dr. Bierregaard is chatting that I am missing?

  • scruzie

    is the live chat going to happen?

    • Elizabeth Nerviano

      Explore posted a comment that it hasn’t started yet. I guess they are running a little late.

      • Tom Sawyer

        Hi Elizabeth! Are we in the right place for the live chat?

        • DLionheart


          It’s not two way chat with the doctor. He has a paper with our questions on it and he is talking to us, via video, at the live cam site. =)

          • Tom Sawyer

            Forgot to thank you!

          • DLionheart

            No you didn’t – you just did it! =)

  • Julie King

    is this the live chat about Bailey?

    • Loraine Kacynski

      Suppose to be.

      • Julie King

        hmm ok my first time here so was not sure.

        • Loraine Kacynski

          My first time also.

  • Dorothy

    where is the live chat? I clicked on the box thumbnail and it took me to the osprey chat. Is it just late in getting started/

  • Loraine Kacynski

    Where is Steve?? Why doesn’t he help Rachel?? Can anything be done about the yellow jackets before Bailey gets injured more?? How long before Bailey fledges?? Will parents take care of her for a while after she fledges?? I didn’t know how to put these questions on blog.

  • Petlovrx12

    Good Afternoon All!
    Dr. B., is it Explore or Audubon that will not intervene with natural issues on the nest? Isn’t feeding wild birds the same concept of intervening in nature when birds don’t have enough to eat. As far as I know, Audubon is not against wild bird feeding, but at this point, I’m not sure.

  • Sally Cersonsky

    When will Rachel quit feeding Bailey in order to force Bailey to fledge? Bailey can not fledge due to its injuries. Why won’t you allow Bailey to be rescued in order to give it a better chance to survive? Will you destroy this nest so no more innocent birds will be killed? I believe it’s wrong to keep it for the sake of studying predation. Thank you

  • DLionheart

    (Posting yet again, bec it’s getting flagged, then removed, as “spam”)

    Re Rachel’s behavior towards Bailey after one of the owl attacks. I watched the “Slo Motion” (as it was titled) video of that particular owl attack again, VERY helpful to see. I, and many others, have our own theories as to possible explanations re Rachel’s behavior towards Bailey, after that particular owl attack.

    Please “Dr. B.” – What is your esteemed take on what she was doing there? Thank you for this and, for ALL that you do.

  • R P

    my time is important too – gotta go

  • DLionheart

    Dr. B – After that particular owl attack – Could Rachel have been trying to push Bailey off the nest, (desperate attempt to save her) OR pushing her to pancake OR pushing Bailey to learn how to fight back (which could increase Bailey’s chance of survival? (Just sharing my guesses as I don’t feel she was “attacking” Bailey, as others have guesstimated bec clearly she has been invested in protecting her.) Your thoughts?

  • Bellaka

    Or was it simply too dark to see what she was doing with Bailey on the nest?

  • DLionheart

    Thank you for answer re IF Bailey eventually, cannot fly – then all of you will intervene. My respect for you just grew enormously Dr. B. =)

  • William Holland

    Have GHO attacks on osprey nests been observed before?

  • Dorothy

    I just heard you state that there would be no intervention unless the problem was human caused. Who decides? What organization? When watching the DCeaglecam one of the eaglets caught its foot in a vee shaped railing. That eaglet was rescued, checked out and returned to the nest in a 24hr turnaround. It would have been terrible having to watch the baby struggle and die.

    • Tom Sawyer

      American Eagle Foundation is on point and a great organization. They intervened with DC4 due to nature and made their fans quite happy including me :-)

    • DLionheart

      No, “Dr. B.” DID state, worst case scenario, IF Bailey cannot fly due wing prob. then yes, they would intervene. Bailey may in fact, be just fine. He also stated that in time, we will just see. It’s looking good for Bailey, so far….no one can tell for sure yet…

      • NL

        He said yes, there could be intervention if she tries to fly and can’t (landing on the ground). not sure about if she never makes it out of the nest. and right, hopefully Baily will be fine, just may take a few more days of fighting off the owl to fledge.

  • Bellaka

    Is anyone sharing with that the audio portion is doubling over itself?

    • Explore Blog

      Make sure you don’t have two browsers open with the chat.

      • Bellaka

        Thank you, had the screen popped out and that was doing it.

  • Kim Sauls Begay

    Doesn’t the dad teach the juvenile ospreys to fish, and stay with them longer after they learn how to fledge?

    • Linda G Massachusetts

      The fishing is sort of self taught although they do observe parents and siblings (if there are any). The male usually does stay longer to feed the chicks. Rachel usually leaves mid August & Steve mid September often after the last chick has left. A few years ago, at the Dunrovin nest, Harriet stayed with her chicks after her mate Ozzie was killed. She did the feeding.

  • Dot Bazinet

    Any sightings or info on Pia Pan and Poole

  • Judy Beers Hollinger

    We can view a family of ospreys across the Strathmere Bay from our NJ shore home. Is it true they mate for life, and return to the same platform/nest each spring?

    • luvwild1s

      They do not mate for life. In the event one of the pair doesn’t make it back to the nest following migration, the remaining Osprey will find another mate, breed and raise young. Their fidelity is to the nest, not to each other. They don’t leave together on their migrations, and don’t winter together in South America. Each one makes their own way back to the nest alone, arriving separately. Hope this answers your questions!:)

  • Martine Gavard

    he didn’t answer my question…??

  • Petlovrx12

    Mine either.

  • Petlovrx12

    I think he said he would answer in text and it would be somewhere on the website.

    • Martine Gavard

      really, which website?

  • Jeanie Higgins Hardman

    dont know if this thread is being followed after the Q&A but I’ll take a chance…
    Dr. Rob’s response, to question regarding Rachels aggressive appearing behavior towards Bailey after the GHO attack, implied he believes she was ATTACKING Bailey, not instructing or protecting her. Is that correct and does one conclude that she was indeed attacking her to harm her?

    • Carlee

      I didn’t see the Q&A.. but I thought Rachel was too aggressive towards Bailey.. in fact I was afraid she might have made her chick’s wing worse. I think there needs to be an intervention.

    • Poppy

      He said that she was so aggrivated that she attacked everything that moves…

      • Carlee

        I wouldn’t be surprised if Rachel made Bailey wing ailment worst when she unleashed on her.. that was awful! .

      • Diane

        Hard to imagine though that she didn’t recognize her own baby’s cries .. i’m no expert but after the owl attacks i can see her alarm in Bailey screaming and standing up with wings outstretched making herself an easy target for the owl to attack. Rachael was protecting in the only way she knew how .. she calmed down after Bailey did .. it looked like that was her intentions to get her quiet and pancake .. my opinion only .. no disrespect to Dr B as he knows Osprey behavior more than any of us do.

  • julia

    transcription?? no i didn’t if i am correct thanks for reply back

  • julia

    i see him chating but that all

  • Barb Bocchicchio

    I know chat is long over but I ‘m glad to see that other observers feel that at some point there should be intervention. Explore should state on each sight their intervention “rules”. I understand the whole “it’s just nature” attitude but when a nest has been ravished and targeted as this one has, and last year too, then human nature, which is compassionate, should come into play. I’ve watched many sad scenarios, been heartbroken but moved on with hope for survival, but this situation is different. It’s like watching Rachel and Bailey being tortured, daily. And now an injury.

    • https://printablecalendar365.com/free-printable-september-2017-calendar-holidays/ september 2017 calendar

      I agreed with you.

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