When is a nest considered “Successful”?

Hi monitors!

A quick note to reiterate the nest status classifications as defined in this program.   We do our best to understand what you are relaying in your observations and then make conservative assessments based on them.   At this time of year you should be seeing the adults and juveniles in/around the nest and differentiating between the two.  It is important to get a good count now because it becomes more difficult to tell the difference between adultss and fledlings as the summer progresses.

This program is especially interested in the  number of fledglings from each nest.  A fledgling has flight feathers (as opposed to downy) and is capable of flying (fledging) and independent survival.  This time of year is the transition period when the juveniles have their flight feathers and are starting to fly.


S = Successful, meaning fledglings have been observed.  Hopefully flying, and certainly robust and with flight feathers.  This does not include the flightless nestlings seen earlier in the season.   Typically a status of “A” changes to “S” in July when the fledgling count is more certain (some nestlings do not make it).

A = Active, meaning breeding behavior and/or downy chicks/nestlings have been observed.

NA = Not Actve, meaning no breeding behavior was observed. Osprey could have been present at the nest, but no nest building, copulation, incubation or chicks were observed.

UNK = Unknown, meaning the nest status is unclear.  This could be the result of a couple situations: No observations were provided, OR Observations were provided but no clear/certain behaviors to indicate breeding, or no breeding.  UNK is typical early in the season, and with nests that are difficult to see, such as cell towers.  A nest can be UNK until mid July when suddenly nestlings are large enough to see over the nest, on the nest, or in flight (fledging).

H = Housekeeping, meaning some basic breeding behavior was observed but the nest was abandoned.  This is typically seen with juveniles.  Sometimes it may be the case that the pair has left the nest due to a threat of some sort.

NN = No Nest, meaning just that – no nest was present at the site.  Perhaps a bare pole is visible.

HN = Historic Nest, meaning there has not been a nest, or any Osprey, at the location for a few years.  It is important to continue tracking these nests and checking on them as sometimes the nest is resettled.

Thank you again for all your hard work!

Jon, Jessica and Gary



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