Driving through the Castle Hills subdivision on Sunday afternoon, I spotted an unusual looking bird circling over the waters of Bright Lake. I was surprised when I finally recognized the bird as an Osprey. To date, I have only ever observed these birds over larger bodies of water like the Trinity River or one of the area’s reservoirs.
But, this Osprey—a bird that is also known as a fish eagle—was doing just fine working the air over this small neighborhood lake. He was tracing out patterns in the air, obviously scouting for prey and an opportune moment.
Eventually, the Opsrey settled on harassing a small group of Ring-billed Gulls congregating around one of the lakes decorative boardwalks. The Osprey dove out of the sky and crashed into the midst of the gulls, but he came away empty-handed.
Now it was the gulls’ turn. Their ire had been raised by the Osprey’s unwelcome intrusion, and the gulls were fighting mad. A group of the white birds gave chase to the larger Osprey and succeeded in driving him away.
But, the Osprey was not convinced. As soon as the gulls broke off their chase, the Osprey winged over and began heading back toward the lake. The gulls immediately re-engaged, and finally drove the big predator away for good.
|Date||–||Jan 13, 2013|
|Time of Day||–||Afternoon|
|Temperature||–||Cold (less than 50°F/10°C)|
|Type of Behavior||–||Hunting|
|Main Article||–||Osprey||Observation Location|
2 Replies to “Osprey – Over Castle Hills”
Ospreys migrate from the North in fall and winter. Many northern bodies of water have only recently frozen this winter. The birds really go on the move when the freeze up occurs. I suspect this bird has recently arrived from the North, and is moving about looking for suitable bodies of water to exploit. That may be why it was on such a small reservoir.
Wow, awesome photos! Love your website!