Osprey In Flight

I was going through some older backup drives and found these files I never worked on from a Blackwater NWR trip about 8 years ago. I remember them now because these were taken on the Wildlife Drive when there used to be an Osprey platform close to the Wildlife Drive. This Osprey Platform was near the last turn before the straight way to the exit. This Osprey put on quite an aerial show. It was so close I clipped its wings a few times. I did not want to stay too long in case I was bothering the nest. But it was so close to the busy Wildlife Drive I would think it was used to cars. Maybe that is why it is now gone.

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Osprey Nests On Platforms At J.N. Ding Darling NWR

As we were driving on the Wildlife Drive at the J.N. Ding Darling NWR, we noticed the Osprey Platform was occupied. If you had a long lens and got fairly far down the road you could get some interesting images of them on the nest. The first few images were from closeby, looking more up at the nest. You can see they were looking at us. But I did not like how the nests looked messy and did not like the angle.

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Closeup, Different Day

Views of different nest from farther away, along the Wildlife Drive. The nest looks cleaner and has nicer sky and more of a side view.

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Two Ospreys – Tree Toppers

Towards the end of the Wildlife Drive at the Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge, there is a large strip of trees jutting out into the water, parallel to the end of the Wildlife Drive. Some of the trees are dead trees which act as very tall snags for the birds to roost. You can usually find a few Eagle nests near the top of some of the trees with leaves. Also Eagles seem to like roosting there. But on this day Ospreys seemed to like the tall trees. There are a few Osprey nests behind these trees plus one Osprey Platform in the water to the left of the trees.

The featured image is made from 5 horizontal images, stacked vertically, handheld, assembled in Photoshop, taken with a Canon 400mm f/4 DO lens with a Canon Series III teleconverter.

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Osprey Platform in water to the left of the line of trees.

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One lonely Osprey on treetop. again 400mm w/ 1.4x teleconverter, 5 shots handheld.

Osprey Nests on Osprey Platforms

Along the Wildlife Drive are many Osprey Platforms. Most of them have active nests on them. There seems to be more platforms this year than last year. If you are patient you can usually get some interesting images of the birds interacting with the chicks or flight shots as they fly around the nest and eventually fly into the nest.

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Another Osprey nest

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Osprey Nest on Osprey Platform Panorama

We went to the Brigantine Division of the Edwin B. Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge in Oceanville, NJ to see what we could find. In the Summer there are lots of shore birds, Herons, Egrets, Ibises, Gulls, Terns, Ospreys, an occasional Bald Eagle, etc.  It is also great for dragonflies and small birds. Along the Wildlife Drive there are many Osprey Platforms which are a good spot to wait for Ospreys to fly in with a fish for the younger Ospreys & other interactions with the younger birds. I liked the symmetry of the two adult Ospreys on the arms but did not want to use a wider lens to get them both in because I wanted to retain the detail. So I shot a series of 2 shot sequences with a 400mm with a 1.4X teleconverter for a panorama showing the whole platform. I liked these 2 the best out of my series.

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