Wednesday, February 21, 2018
News Roundup

Male rehabbed osprey released near nesting widowed female in Pinellas

A female osprey sits alone on eggs or nestlings, having lost her mate of four years on Monday evening when it was hit by a car on Ridgemoor Boulevard in East Lake and died on the road in front of the nest. Barbara Walker with the Clearwater Audubon Society picked up the dead male osprey, which she had watched over the course of the four-year match. "The male osprey was hit with tremendous force," said Walker, who also lamented that a barred owl and a deer were recently killed by cars on the same stretch of Ridgemoor. "All breeding adults, most likely with dependent young," she said of the animals. Meanwhile on Monday, at the Audubon Center for Birds of Prey, a male Pinellas osprey was ready for release. It had been cared for at the Suncoast Seabird Sanctuary in Indian Shores since July and then transferred to the center in Maitland. Walker contacted experts who agreed a pairing is a long shot, but worth a try. A volunteer drove to the Audubon center and got the male, which Walker released on Tuesday in a safe location near the widowed osprey. Walker saw the released male fishing nearby at a lake and said she is hopeful but realistic. "We do not know how long she, (the widowed osprey) will sit there but we are about to find out." Walker plans to monitor the nest to watch for a match. "I hope he continues to hang around. He's the perfect male."

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