10 March 2009

As of this morning the ospreys have a second egg and the male has been quite busy carrying sticks and what appear to be banana tree leaves to the nest. Both parents have been regularly turning the eggs ensuring that the developing embryos do not adhere to the inside of the eggshell which can result in the embryo becoming malformed. Constant warmth stimulates the growth process. With another unseasonably warm day this week it should be easier to keep the eggs temperature regulated, though we are expecting cooler weather beginning Thursday.

Both parents have a brood patch, an area of bare skin under their breast feathers. Males have a smaller ‘hot-spot' than the females; however, the female ospreys have a larger area with many vessels that can be suffused with blood whenever the egg temperature falls. This instinctive ability allows the ospreys to sense temperature changes within the eggs and to control it within the nest through their own body methods.

The parents seem quite attentive to the two eggs. We’ll have to wait a few more days to see how many eggs this pair will have. Also, the gallery page has been updated with the latest pictures.

Enjoy!! 8-)


jazzel26 said...

Have you been able to identify either of these osprey as birds from the 2007 or 2008 nests ?

They are very attentive to the eggs. Yesterday I watched her cover the eggs with that big bunch of leaves, mate, then uncover them and resume incubation!


moderator said...

Good morning Linda,

It does appear that the 2009 ospreys are the same pair from last year. I'm not quite certain they're the same couple from 2007. The female's markings from 2007 are a bit different and we don't have many photographs to compare to the present ospreys.

I agree with the attentiveness of the ospreys. Maybe a year's maturity will help bring healthy chicks to the nest.

Anonymous said...

Well, after all their hard work getting the nest ready, here's to attentive parents and healthy chicks. It's amazing just watching them.


Anonymous said...

Which is the female? one has a "heart" shape on its forehead, the other is more mottled.

moderator said...

The female has the "heart" shape on her forehead while the male has the larger patch on his. Also, female ospreys often have darker plumage and a more defined necklace in the breast area than their male counterparts.