Ron Wilson shares these images of an osprey family he snapped Tuesday morning on a walk along the Columbia River in Trail.
“(They’re) checking out who may be coming from the north, and feeding their young breakfast,” Wilson explains.
The osprey (Pandion haliaetus), also called sea hawk, river hawk, and fish hawk, is a diurnal, fish-eating bird of prey with a cosmopolitan range.
It is a large raptor, reaching more than 60 cm (24 in) in length and 180 cm (71 in) across the wings. It is brown on the upperparts and predominantly greyish on the head and underparts.
The osprey tolerates a wide variety of habitats, nesting in any location near a body of water providing an adequate food supply. It is found on all continents except Antarctica, although in South America it occurs only as a non-breeding migrant.
As its other common names suggest, the osprey’s diet consists almost exclusively of fish. It possesses specialised physical characteristics and unique behaviour in hunting its prey.
Its unique characteristics classify it in its own taxonomic genus, Pandion, and family, Pandionidae.