I just received a question about the return migration of our Ospreys. We often get unconfirmed reports starting in early to mid March, but I think personally I have not seen an osprey before the end of the third week or the fourth week of March. Last year my first sighting was on April 6. But as you know, we had a loooooong cold winter. It depends on whether or not we still have frozen lakes. Ospreys usually make the return trip quicker than their fall migration. It is the urge to breed that brings them back and they know that returning early, defending their territory from other Ospreys and laying the eggs early will be a more successful breeding strategy. They can make it back from South and Central America in about two weeks, but if they run into snow and frozen lakes, they seem to slow down and hang out where fish are available. Sometimes, if lakes are frozen here, we will see the resident birds show up at their nest sites, but since they have to travel to open water for food, they may only be seen sporadically in the early days of the breeding season.
I am working hard on the annual report now...gathering, organizing and analyzing the data collected last year. A lot of work! Fun tho!