[Bristol-Birds] eastern Sullivan Co Osprey deminstrates likely territorial behavior

  • From: "Wallace Coffey" <jwcoffey@xxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: "Bristol-birds" <bristol-birds@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Mon, 30 Apr 2012 23:47:40 -0400

Riverside Road
South Fork Holston River 
Sullivan Co., TN 
30 April 2012

"Osprey One" is still at the monitoring area along Riverside Road and
 the South Fork Holston River in eastern Sullivan Co.

This was its 24th day at the site and, as far as known, it daily 
perches in the same tree.  However, coming and going and days
to check can sometimes miss the bird if it is a few trees away,
hunting or soaring just down river for a few minutes.  For that
reason, stakeouts at the location lasts about 30 minutes when
practical.  Today's watch was an hour and 15 minutes. 

During the vigil, it demonstrated territorial calling posture.  This
behavior has not been seen.  About 6:30 p.m. it suddenly changed its
relaxed upright posture, spread its wings slightly and stooped down
with a near horizontal body angle.  The voice became rapid and
it almost appeared to be food begging.  It began to concentrate on
something down the river.  It was not apparent if another Osprey (male
intruder or mate) was approaching.

A Great Egret appeared, flying low over the river and heading upstream.
The Osprey took flight and went down river.  It seemed to
ignore the egret.  Within two or three minutes it returned, flying
high and direct to its frequent perch.  No reason for this behavior
could be determined.

It has generally been thought that this bird regularly stops at this location
during its northern migration from South America or the Caribbean to
refuel with fat before continuing.

Wallace Coffey
Bristol, TN

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