Ospreys on a platform nest

Greenbelt began conducting Osprey conservation in 2007 when it constructed its first nesting platform at the Cox Reservation. Since then our goals and efforts have expanded greatly to include:

  • Management - install and maintain Osprey nesting platforms
  • Monitoring – use staff and citizen scientists to collect data on Osprey nesting activity
  • Education – engage the public and educate them about Osprey natural history and protection
  • Research – collaborate on Osprey research projects to enhance Osprey conservation
Osprey eggs in nest

Accomplishments to date in Essex County:

  • Installed 20 new nesting platforms and repaired countless others on Greenbelt and other properties since 2007
  • Created Osprey Watch, where 25-30 volunteer citizen scientists work with Greenbelt staff to monitor of all known active osprey nests north of Boston
  • Installed a webcam in 2013 at the Cox Reservation Osprey nest in Essex and fed a live stream to the Greenbelt website. In 2014 there were over 75,000 views of the live-streaming video. In 2015 and 2016, Osprey were present but did not lay eggs.
  • Installed 3 informational kiosks about Osprey biology and conservation.
  • Banded 85 Osprey chicks since 2013 including 35 in 2016. Placed satellite transmitters on two juvenile Osprey in 2013 and two more in 2014 as part of a long-term research project on Osprey migration with lead investigator Dr. Rob Bierregaard. Only one of the four Ospreys with an attached transmitter remains alive in 2015–Flow, a male hatched in 2014. Go to the Osprey Research section to view Flow’s location.
Greenbelt osprey webcam

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