01 February 2012

2012 Osprey Season

We want to welcome all of our cam watchers to a new osprey season at Palmetto Electric. This year marks our sixth web cam season from Hilton Head Island, SC and the fifth season for the osprey blog where our viewers can post comments about our nest and other osprey sites around the world.

Our nest is located on Mathews Drive and sits upon a 100 foot communications tower. The tower is situated within a quarter mile or so of our local airport. A beacon light to the right of the cam glows intermittently at night; therefore, we do not broadcast night images due to the glare of the beacon. The ospreys don’t seem affected by the beacon’s illumination since they’ve been nesting on the platform since the mid 1980's. Before the platform was installed the osprey built nests on the cross arms of the tower which often came apart and fell to the ground.

In the past viewers have asked why we don’t band the osprey. The communications tower, which is regulated by the FCC (Federal Communications Commission), is required to have a technician that is certified with antenna, tower climbing, and rescue skills. The problem is there isn’t anyone in the area that is certified to climb our communications tower and also knowledgeable of osprey to band them.

Last year we had a new adult pair, named Bea and Jasper, at the nest with their two chicks, MKD and TE, successfully fledging. Over the last few years we have had new pairs take control of the platform so we’ll have to see if Bea and Jasper return or if a new couple settle on the tower.

If you’re new to ospreys, check out our Osprey FAQ page as well as our Osprey Photo Gallery for pictures from past seasons.

Thanks for joining us and we hope to see another successful osprey season!


Anonymous said...

Looking forward to the 2012 Hilton Head Island nesting season!
I hope Bea and Jasper return this year...
Palmetto Electric - thank you for this wonderful opportunity!!
~Nature Matters~


Carol said...

Oh here we go! I am so excited! Welcome back everyone.
By the way, until we have activity on our nest, check out Dunedin, FL. They have a fabulous webcam going. Wish we could get something similar here. http://ospreynest.info/ospreycam.php