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Osprey Watchers

Cheers! for the students at the Martin Luther King Center in Newport, RI for watching our osprey. The following article appeared in Newport This Week on May 16, 2024.

Watching Outdoors Indoors: NATURE in the NEIGHBORHOOD
Watching Outdoors Indoors, By Newport This Week Staff, May 16, 2024

Jy’Ajah (center) and Imani (right) were among the students in Miss Kyra’s and Miss Kelianie’s class who watched the osprey webcam.

The Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Community Center preschool class had the opportunity to watch a real osprey nest live on May 10 through the Jamestown osprey nest webcam.

The students were thrilled to see the mother osprey and her two eggs, and the father osprey bringing sticks and trading spaces with the mother. The viewing followed a morning lesson about birds and the preschoolers making bird art of their own.

The streamed video was made possible by the Conanicut Island Raptor Project. The webcam is in its 19th year and is consistently streaming and available for viewing through the CIRP website.

According to the website,, osprey birds born years ago are returning this year to nest and, in preparation, the CIRP created two new nest platforms this spring, making 24 sites available this summer.

Although the male and female winter in different areas, the pair return to the same nest each year, with the male arriving first, followed by the female several days later. Nest-building or nest repair is the first chore.

Courtship and mating activity occur during this period. The first egg usually appears in mid-April. Typically, two or three eggs are laid. Incubation by both the female and male takes 35 to 40 days.

After hatching, the male continues to bring fish to the female to feed the young. By late June or early July, the fast-growing chicks begin to jump around in the nest, exercising their wings. Soon, the young begin to fly and explore, but still return to the nest. The adults usually begin their migration south in early September, leaving the juveniles to fend for themselves. Juveniles begin their first perilous migration south in late September.

The young osprey will spend almost two years in South America before making their first migration north to the area where they were born, seeking a mate and nest site.

The CIRP was founded in 2005 and has spent nearly 20 years dedicated to the preservation, study and enjoyment of Jamestown’s birds of prey. Some of the birds include the American Kestrel, the Bald Eagle, Merlin, Northern Harrier, Peregrine Falcon, and Turkey Vulture, among other species of hawks and owls.

Ospreys in New England spend their winters in South America and return north in mid- to late-March. Their life expectancy can exceed 20 years.

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