The Osprey is
one of the most widely distributed birds in the world. It is found
on ocean coasts and along the shorelines of large lakes and rivers
on all continents and islands, except those in the polar and subpolar
regions where water surfaces are frozen for most of the year, and
a few very isolated islands in temperate and tropical zones.
The Osprey breeds throughout North America south of the Arctic treeline,
and winters from central California and the US Gulf Coast south to
Peru and Brazil.
is a large, narrow-winged hawk that reaches a length of 22 inches
and a wingspan of 54 inches (1.38 metres). The Osprey has a short,
hooked beak, a white cap, a dark brown eyeline broadening behind
eye, a dark brown nape, back and upper wings The chin, throat, breast
and belly are white, and the brown tail has a number of white bands.
The Osprey flies on flat wings with a distinct kink at the elbow.
as the fish Hawk, Ospreys search for fish by hovering over the water,
watching the surface below. When prey is sighted, an Osprey dives
steeply, its talons outspread, and plunges into the water after
the fish. It quickly resurfaces and flies off with the catch, adjusting
the fish in its claws so that the head is pointed forward.
The bottom two
images were taken in spring in the Peter Jannink Nature Park on
the shores of Shuswap Lake in Salmon Arm, BC. Nesting was on a specially
provided platform set atop a telephone pole in the marshy foreground
of the nature park.
The Osprey was
featured on the Canadian $10 bill for many years.