About the OspreyCam


Alcoa launched the OspreyCam in May 2012.  The OspreyCam is a live webcam that follows a pair of osprey (named Oliveea and Oscar by Alcoa employees) at Badin Lake.  They return year after year to a nest situated atop the Narrows Dam. The OspreyCam has received more than 541,000 hits from 87 countries since it was introduced.

The OspreyCam has captured the hatching of three baby chicks. Over the next two months, viewers can watch the parents feed and care for the chicks as they grow and prepare to take flight. Osprey chicks usually fledge — or leave the nest for their first flight — in late June or early July. The chicks can be seen making practice flights across the nest as they get ready to take flight.

“It’s a great way to see the wonder of nature, right here in our own backyard,” said Mark Gross, technical manager for Alcoa Power Generating Inc. “It’s fascinating to watch these little chicks grow and take flights.”


Click "play" button to watch Ospreycam

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December 2014
January 2015
February 2015
March 2015
April 2015


Recent posts

Two Happy Chicks
Happy Mother's Day!
Still Waiting...
On The Lookout For The First Chick
What's That Noise?
Drying Out
A Third Egg
New Camera Coming Soon
A Second Egg Arrives
Easter Egg
As you can see, the camera has been adju...
Looks like we have our first egg! Thanks...
Our Ospreys have been working hard getti...
A View From the Dam
Building The New Nest
Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Two Happy Chicks

We have two happy chicks in the nest this afternoon. It looks like Mom and Dad are doing a great job taking care of the chicks and making sure they have lots of fish to eat. 

There was some concern yesterday when we couldn't see both chicks. It's hard to know if the second chick was simply hiding or if the third egg has hatched. We'll keep our fingers crossed that we'll soon see a third chick.

The temperature is currently in the mid 70s, but it will start heating up again on Friday and into next week. Fortunately, Mom is doing a great job of using her wings to provide some much needed shade for these chicks.

Posted at 5:02:02 PM | Permalink | Comments(27) | Trackback

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Happy Mother's Day!

Screen Shot 2015-05-10 at 3.06.35 PM


Mother's Day -- what a perfect occasion for the arrival of this year's first Osprey chick. The egg hatched early this morning. It's a little hard to see, but the chick is currently in the lower part of the nest between the center and the right side of the nest. 


The new chick has a hot few days ahead. The temperature will reach the 90s the first part of the week with a chance of afternoon thunderstorms. We'll look for the next chick to hatch in the upcoming days.

Posted at 3:16:07 PM | Permalink | Comments(22) | Trackback

Thursday, May 07, 2015

Still Waiting...

Like an expectant father, we're all still waiting to see the first Osprey chick appear. 


If you happen to be one of the first to spot the new chick when it arrives, capture a photo and post it in the comments.

Posted at 12:01:59 PM | Permalink | Comments(14) | Trackback

Monday, May 04, 2015

On The Lookout For The First Chick

It's time to be on the lookout for the arrival of our first Osprey chick. The first egg should hatch this week. All of the eggs won't hatch all at once. There is usually a span of several days between the arrival of the first and last chick.

Once the chicks hatch, they'll need lots of fish. A brood of three Osprey chicks requires up to six pounds of fish each day. Most fish caught by Ospreys are about one pound -- the largest catch on record is a whopping four pounds.

Posted at 10:09:25 AM | Permalink | Comments(7) | Trackback

Thursday, April 30, 2015

What's That Noise?

Many of you have asked about the background noise at the dams. Due to heavy rains, the floodgates were open last week to bypass flood water. Fortunately, the Ospreys don't seem to mind the noise as much as the rest of us.   

The Ospreys are doing a great job this year keeping their eggs stay warm and protecting them from predators. They are regularly bringing in new nesting material and sticks as they prepare for their chicks to arrive.

The temps will be cooler the rest of this week with a chance of rain. This weekend and early next week will bring warm dry days and beautiful blue skies.

Posted at 7:53:00 AM | Permalink | Comments(6) | Trackback

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Drying Out

It's been a wet couple of weeks here in North Carolina, but the Osprey are drying out. The forecast calls for mostly sunny days throughout the week with another chance of rain over the weekend.


As the days get warmer, some viewers have asked about the construction of the nesting box and whether it may sag as a result of the summer heat. We feel confident in the quality of the nesting box, which was chosen after consulting with a biologist and has been used in warm weather locations in Florida with success. The manufacturer says the nest is cross-ribbed for extra strength and "molded using proprietary high-density polyethylene that is contaminant and weather-resistant."

Posted at 11:04:00 AM | Permalink | Comments(18) | Trackback

A Third Egg

That's right... we've spotted the same thing that many of you have caught on camera: the arrival of a third egg. If you capture a good photo of the eggs, share it in the comments below.

Many of you have been wondering if this is the same pair of Osprey from last year. While it's impossible to know for sure (we will never band or tag the birds in any way), we do believe this is the same pair. The markings look very similar.

Posted at 8:04:19 AM | Permalink | Comments(0) | Trackback

Thursday, April 09, 2015

New Camera Coming Soon

We apologize for the problems with our video feed. We hope to get a temporary camera up and running this afternoon, and a permanent new camera will be installed next week. It should resolve the technical issues we have experienced.

Please check back and keep watching our Osprey.

Posted at 1:55:00 PM | Permalink | Comments(14) | Trackback

Friday, April 03, 2015

A Second Egg Arrives

Osprey Two Eggs

We've spotted a second egg in the Osprey nest. Thanks to Mary Williams for capturing this great photo on Friday morning.


We are continuing to work on technical issues to improve the quality of the video feed.

Posted at 11:32:08 AM | Permalink | Comments(10) | Trackback

Wednesday, April 01, 2015

Easter Egg

Our Ospreys have once again delivered us an egg for Easter! These proud parents are constantly looking at their egg and rolling it around.

There has been lots of activity in all of our Osprey nests this week. The birds are making last minute preparations and gathering soft nesting material.  

Ospreys normally lay 2-3 eggs within a couple of weeks. The eggs incubate for about five weeks, so we should see baby chicks in early May. The typical lifespan for an Osprey is 7 to 10 years, but some of these amazing birds can live 20 years or longer.

Posted at 3:29:20 PM | Permalink | Comments(9) | Trackback

As you can see, the camera has been adjusted to give you a closer look of the nest.

We are aware of the technical issues you are experiencing and are working to correct the problem. Thank you in advance for your patience!


Posted at 1:55:11 PM | Permalink | Comments(5) | Trackback

Looks like we have our first egg! Thanks for sharing, Blaine.


Posted at 12:09:53 PM | Permalink | Comments(2) | Trackback

Monday, March 30, 2015

Our Ospreys have been working hard getting the nest ready for eggs in time for Easter! Have you been wondering where the male is most of the time? He has been sitting on top of the camera watching the female adjusting all the sticks and nesting material! The Buzzards are still a nuisance to the ospreys, but there are enough osprey around to keep them at bay. The daytime temps have been averaging around 65 with lows in the 40’s. Pollen is in the air and leaves are coming out - spring is here!

Posted at 9:10:13 AM | Permalink | Comments(22) | Trackback

Thursday, March 19, 2015

A View From the Dam


Here's a look at the osprey nest from another vantage point. This photo was taken from the top of the dam looking up toward the new nest.


The ospreys have been busy carrying in sticks to the nest and chasing buzzards this week. They are teaming up with other pairs to help with the chase. You can occassionally hear them calling for backup when the buzzards are trying to move in too close.

Posted at 12:45:06 PM | Permalink | Comments(18) | Trackback

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Building The New Nest

It's great to see so much interest in the osprey's new home. Rest assured, there is plenty of material nearby for them to add to their nest. In addition to sticks, you will often see the osprey pull grass and moss from the face of the dam to add to the nest.  

In the past, we've noticed that the osprey don't get serious about building their nest until after they have mated for a couple of weeks. You can see that they have started adding more and more material over the weekend.

This is a great opportunity to see how these birds build a nest. Keep watching and see how it develops. 

Posted at 11:46:18 AM | Permalink | Comments(10) | Trackback