You be the judge – me? – I give him straight 10s!

If fish diving were an Olympic event, I think this Osprey diving off the south tip of Gooseberry Friday would get straight tens.  Having watched them off and on for years, I knew they went in feet first – and I knew they dove head first – what I didn’t know was they jack-knifed just before entering the water – look at those talons!

Results – and other photos in this sequence to come.

Another beautiful June morning on Gooseberry, though wildlife seemed scarce. We did get serenaded by this little sparrow, however.

And I think we all get bored with seeing robins – we shouldn’t – they look especially nice in the morning sun.

And after that we watched  the osprey above – and a companion – hovering high above the water. But as Don commented. watching this guy go in was “worth the price of admission.” This entire sequence covers a bit less than two seconds! (As always, click any picture for a larger version.)

Yeah that’s right – no fish!  One fall I watched a young osprey dive two dozen times in about an hour as I paddled down the Westport River in a kayak – and he came up empty each time. I don’t know how often the adults miss, but being a predator isn’t as easy as it may seem.  A lot just don’t make it through their first year, but those who do go on incredible voyages – sometimes to South America and back.

If you want to get up close and personal with the ospreys – including some individuals from Westport, check out the pages of Prof. Richard Bierregaard. He tags these birds with radio transmitters and tracks their paths year round and has an incredible series of maps on his pages showing just where they go – on a typical day, or throughout the year. You can also sign up for his email list on that page which keeps you up to date without being a pain.

Meanwhile, we watched this pair  pausing to “make” – hovering once they appear to have spotted a target – and diving several times.

And yes, one went home with breakfast!

Meanwhile, we watched this unusual little craft make its way into Buzzzard’s Bay. Looked to me to be about 20-feet long and seemed to have borrowed its mast and sails from other, smaller boats – though the cabin with the big windows reminded me of a Fred Shell design I saw many years ago –  the  Great Blue Heron.  In fact, Bren and I sailed in one on Lake Champlain, I believe, with Fred.  I bought a couple of Fred’s boats – one in kit form. But while this looks something like one, I don’t think it is.

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5 Responses to You be the judge – me? – I give him straight 10s!

  1. Jess says:

    Wow! What awesome dives you captured! I was so expecting a fish! I was just to this wonderful spot yesterday for the first time as I am still learning nifty places in this area. I am no beach lover in the summer but this is just an extraordinary place. I look forward to quietly settling there in the morning after season and watching the wildlife. I love your blog.

    • Greg Stone says:

      Thanks – glad you like Gooseberry – and the blog. Things have really picked up now and the shore birds should be fun from now until well into the fall – as well as lots of others. Be puttingup a new postshortly.

  2. Linda says:

    curious as to what kind of camera you are using. I have recently started exploring this area and love taking pictures along the shore. Love your blog, very interesting and full of history!

    • Greg Stone says:

      Thanks for the kind words – the camera I use is a Canon Rebel with a 300mm zoom lens (Canon’s cheaper version of that lens). I started carrying it on my gooseberry walks for one main reason – to learn the bird life! If I take pictures of what I see I can then go home and figure out what the birds are. That’s worked because I now feel pretty comfortable when identifying most of them on the spoy, as well as several butterflies. I lag way behind on the wild flowers, but I have lots of pictures to review in the cold weather 😉

      Oh – you’ll find more details about the camera here: https://gooseberryjournal.wordpress.com/2011/09/15/flight-ecstasy-a-new-rebel-and-a-quantum-leap-in-awareness/

      • Linda says:

        Greg,
        Right now I’m using a Canon point and shoot. I do get some great shots with it. Within the next 2 months I will be upgrading to a Rebel 3ti! Can’t wait to get some late fall pics with the new camera! I’m about 15 mi east of Gooseberry, as the crow flies – (40 min.) As for the wildflowers, I’ll have to look closer at your pics and see what I can find out. Gardening has been another long time hobby of mine.

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