Dipped in cream


The wing feathers of the juvenile osprey have been memorably described as having been dipped in cream. They contrast with an adult’s wing feathers, which are uniformly dark.

Now is the time to see juvenile ospreys out of the nest and hunting, for within a month, they will have migrated south. They will return only as (dark winged) adults in two to three years, then to nest and raise their own chicks.

A juvenile Osprey hunts from a tree branch.


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6 Responses to Dipped in cream

  1. Karen Pidcock says:

    What a snowy beaut!

  2. Mary McQueen says:

    Such a beautiful raptor. I didn’t know about the wing tips on juveniles. Thank you for sharing this interesting info.

  3. Vicki says:

    why 2-3 years? Are the mamas and poppas we see in the nests each year alternate mamas and papas, or do they come back every year when they get older?

    • Alistair says:

      Vicki, after their first migration south as a chick, ospreys do not return until they are adults ready to breed. Thereafter, they return annually.

  4. Willem Wijma says:

    Over here, in the Netherlands we see them in the spring for a bout 4 weeks on their way north and right now, in september, about three to four weeks on their way south. Great birds and very exiting to spot them catching big fish here in the lakes. Unfortunately they catch about two fish a day, so the chance to witness that is very rare. Nice picture by the way!
    I remember seeing ospreys nest on the mooring posts of the Ferry landing in Pilot Bay, where my brother in law owned a campground.

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