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Young osprey dies as volunteers attempt to band it

DUNEDIN — A 6-week-old osprey in the nest featured on died Monday after volunteers attempted to attach a data-collecting band to its talon.

The bird became unresponsive as the volunteers were working with it.

"It was unusual because typically they'll try to bite you. Not this one," said Barb Walker, a conservation advocate from the Clearwater Audubon Society.

The nest, at the city-owned Stirling Links golf course at 620 Palm Blvd., is featured on the osprey cam, where osprey enthusiasts around the world have watched live feeds of activity in the nest.

The dead osprey may have suffered from a preexisting heart condition, according to Penny Boehme, a state and federally licensed bird rehabilitation specialist.

"He was really small for his age, with large feet but a puny body. It also looked like the inside of his mouth was blue. Those are usually tell-tale signs," she said.

The osprey was the third and final chick to die in the nest this year. Its siblings died last month of unknown causes. "It's been a sad, sad day," Walker said.

Young osprey dies as volunteers attempt to band it 06/12/13 [Last modified: Wednesday, June 12, 2013 11:23pm]
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