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.”
Tuesday, April 21, 2015Drying 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."
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| TrackbackA 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
| TrackbackThursday, April 09, 2015New 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
| TrackbackFriday, April 03, 2015A Second Egg Arrives
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
| TrackbackWednesday, April 01, 2015Easter 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.
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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
Looks like we have our first egg! Thanks for sharing, Blaine.
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| TrackbackMonday, 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
| TrackbackThursday, March 19, 2015A 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
| TrackbackSunday, March 15, 2015Building 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
| TrackbackTuesday, March 10, 2015
As you can see, here is the new nesting box. We hope the Ospreys enjoy their new home!
Posted at 2:37:00 PM | Permalink
| TrackbackNew nesting box for New Season!
As you already know, our Ospreys have returned for a new season! The new nesting box arrived at the end of last week and was installed yesterday. We were not sure the old box would hold up to another season of youngsters especially if we have triplets again! Only a few sticks were added from the old nest as most of them had rotted from last year. I'm confident this pair will fill the nest full of fresh sticks. Steps are being taken for new nesting box installations on the transmission towers.
We do read ALL your comments but are not able to reply to each and every one, BUT we will try to answer most questions as soon as possible!
Posted at 1:53:00 PM | Permalink
| TrackbackTuesday, January 27, 2015Osprey update
We expect the Ospreys to return in mid to late February. Depending on when the new nesting box arrives, we may take the site down temporarily during the box replacement. Regardless, we will not clean up the old nest. However, if the new nesting box arrives in time, we will add a few small sticks to the nest. The Ospreys are wonderful housekeepers!!
Additionaly, we will be installing 6 new nesting boxes on the transmission towers. If the Ospreys take to them, we may add more down the road.
Posted at 1:32:08 PM | Permalink
| TrackbackTuesday, October 14, 2014Autumn
The Fall season is upon us and the leaves have started changing its colors. Soon they will begin shedding from the trees. We would like to thank everyone for their comments and watching our OspreyCam this year.
Posted at 2:26:16 PM | Permalink
| TrackbackThursday, August 28, 2014Migrating soon
We haven't seen many Ospreys this week. Sadly, it is time for them to begin migrating south. Miracle and parents are still in the area, but we expect them to begin their long journey soon.
It has been an amazing year! Miracle has proved to be a fighter from the very beginning. We have watched him grow into the strong, stunning Osprey he is today. We are going to miss watching this lovely family, lbut ook forward to seeing them again next year.
Posted at 1:15:01 PM | Permalink