Duck, osprey, goose! swan and egret too

Our mooring home enables us to maintain a near-constant watch into the daily lives of an osprey family, several pair of canada geese, ducks, great egrets and for a short while a few swans. Each with their own voice and habits, they’ve become somewhat predictable and same as we, they seem to hunker down in lousy weather. ( like today- bleakness reins)

Soon after we arrived, the osprey made themselves known with that easily identifiable, sharp, annoyed whistle cheep, cheep, yewk. A mated pair was raising junior and boy was he noisy! A couple of days later he was flying and learning to fish; feet first of course. Young osprey spend 50-60 days in the nest after birth and then they seem to be very ready to take on the world. A couple of weeks later we saw the young osprey transporting nest materials; looked like he was establishing residence close to the old homestead. Such a good guy.

Tree branches- no flight problem mon

Tree branches- no flight problem mon

One of the family in flight between us and the island

One of the family in flight between us and the island

The geese are very vocal and honk if other geese even think about entering “their space.” They honk a lot and we don’t mind it- yet.

When not honking, can be seen perfecting ostrich imitation

When not honking, can be seen perfecting ostrich imitation

The local mallard ducks just began producing those adorable little puff balls we love. The other day mama duck was out for feed walk with her chicks along the mud bank while two geese meandered behind. Just after I snapped this shot one of the geese snapped at a duckling- goosed him actually!  Baby was unharmed- just a bit surprised. Mama picked up the pace after that.

Watch out for that goose little duckling!

Watch out for that goose little duckling!

Several great egrets hang out around here too. The pose they strike is so still, so perfect for that instant snap to grab an unsuspecting fishy. So slender, stately and quiet 🙂

Doing the great egret stretch to feed pose

Doing the great egret stretch to feed pose

I was very happy to see a pair of mute swans take up nest-building on the banks practically opposite the boat. How great to see first-hand how the nest is made and then the whole process following.  The cygnets would be the cutest- not ugly- creatures to watch. We’ve read that both male and female participate in nest-building.

I'll leave you to it and critique your work later

I’ll leave you to it and critique your work later

Nest building one mouthful at a time. A long neck comes in handy

Nest building one mouthful at a time. A long neck comes in handy

I’m willing to bet that the one on the left is female and the one building is the male. How do I know this?  Because when she got up part way through the process, she looked around, they waded into the water and swam away. They did not return to that partially built nest and we are so bummed. If she could speak, the words might have been, “I told you it was too exposed! And see-that big white thing over there is too close. We need more privacy.”

Naturally, we have gulls and cormorants, but what can I say?  They are what they are.

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