292 Posts

rburmaster Young ospreys are fledging all over the place. Which means great opportunities to find them in photo friendly spots much lower than their typically very high up nests. I found a trio of osprey siblings hanging out near their nest on some athletic fields today. This one was perched on a soccer goal near the edge if the field. Allowed me to carefully sneak up close in the wooded area next to the field for some close ups. Ospreys are typically skittish and won't allow you to get very close. But fledglings are more tolerant. And these ones especially since they are used to lots of human traffic on the fields below their nest. Cool experience. They will be hanging around for a few weeks to sharpen their instinctive flying and fishing skills. Then begin a several thousand mile migration to Central or South America to live for their first couple years. 5mon

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11mon rburmaster
Earlybird Robert Burmaster 😎
rburmaster Attention please! All voles report to the surface immediately. 11mon

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rburmaster Another one. Yup. 11mon
  •   savv292 Such a young one!! Where did you spot this little guy? 11mon
  •   mamacita.rita 11mon
  •   rburmaster @savv292 He was sitting out in the middle of a large holding pond. Maple Grove, MN. I've found him (or another owl) three days in a row within 1000 meters of this spot. There are likely several owls in this area. 11mon
  •   savv292 Nice! I love these birds...there have been 13 spotted on the wildlife refuge where I work on Martha's Vineyard, MA! How lucky are we to have such an explosion of them! 11mon
  •   rburmaster @savv292 I love them too! Getting out to find them whenever I can. We likely won't see am irruption like this for many years. And, 13(!!) at your refuge? Wow!!! 11mon
  •   savv292 Well I've seen 6 myself, but the 13 were reported during the Christmas Bird Count. The ecologist I work with believes that the ones in MA are mostly from Iceland, and the incursion might actually be caused by a huge increase in food supply in the arctic , leading to a greater number of fledglings surviving and and a greater amount of area needed to support then, hence so many coming so far south! Most people think it's the opposite... fascinating isn't it! 11mon
  •   rburmaster @savv292 I agree. Most of the birds that have been captured have been well fed and healthy. So the population growth theory makes total sense. In addition to snowies, we've had a mini-movement of hawk owls. Nowhere close to the scale of the snowy irruption, but many more being seen than usual. Could also be related to a population growth from abundance of prey. 11mon

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rburmaster The Snowy Owls just keep on coming. This is a new one I located today in the middle of an open field in a very busy suburban area. And, as usual, I didn't have my big camera with. But, I did have my digiscoping gear. This is from 150 meters shot through my spotting scope from inside my car. 11mon

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12mon rburmaster
Valencia Robert Burmaster 😎
rburmaster Went looking for a Snowy Owl on the way to work this morning. And, found one. Gotta find 'em while I can because it won't be long before they head back toward the Arctic. I got some decent photos of this young owl today despite poor early morning light. Hit the link to my Flickr stream on my IG profile to see more. 12mon
  •   conspiringwithnature Yay! And in flight--towards you, too! 12mon
  •   rburmaster @s_hunt_ She/He flew right past me sitting in my car. Check out more photos on my Flickr stream. 12mon
  •   margeh123 Great catch 12mon
  •   rburmaster @margeh123 Thanks! 12mon
  •   neebelung I love their fluffy underpants ️ 9mon
  •   twonames Wow! How cool! 7mon
  •   rburmaster @twonames Did you get a chance to see any Snowy Owls during the irruption this winter? It was incredible. I ended up with 17 different owls seen at various locations around Minnesota. There's still one or two owls hanging out in eastern Wisconsin. 7mon
  •   twonames Wow! That's awesome! Sadly we don't have any native snowy owls in the uk. :( the only time I've seen them is at the falconry centre. There are two beauties there. 7mon

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12mon rburmaster
Sutro Robert Burmaster 😎
rburmaster Here's a little better photo of the Snowy Owl my family and I located in Duluth the other day. I posted a panoramic version of this photo on my Flickr stream. Hit the link on my IG profile to see it and others. 12mon

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rburmaster Ornithology experts are saying there's a historic invasion of Snowy Owls happening now, mainly in the Northeastern U.S. coast and along the coasts of the Great Lakes. If you live in these areas, now may be your best chance ever to see one of these rare and amazing birds that typically live in the arctic circle. Search the web for "snowy owl invasion 2013" to find more info including maps of sightings. And, if you do happen to see one, please keep a safe distance away. The owls are moving south in search of food and are typically worn out and stressed. Report any sightings through eBird.org and report any injured birds to your local wildlife support resources. This is my photo of an adult male owl taken at the Minneapolis St. Paul Airport in December 2011. 1y

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rburmaster Almost forgot it's Falcon Friday. Here's a fresh shot of a Saker Falcon from the Last Chance Forever show at the Minnesota State Fair. Great chance to see some beautiful raptors up close and personal. #birdfreaks #birdfreak_ff 1y

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rburmaster I made a quick stop@to check on a local peregrine falcon family today. And look who landed right by me. 1y
  •   rburmaster @optimista Thank you, Michelle. This encounter was dumb luck. There is a peregrine nest box directly below the Veterans Home near the Ford Bridge. I was checking on them and this not-so-little guy landed about 10 feet from me. Got a bunch of photos. And watched them run hunting sorties on pigeons and other small birds. #waycool 1y
  •   rburmaster @kelly_k333 Thanks! They live near the Ford Bridge, and they are great fun to watch. Best viewed from the parking lot and sidewalk of the Veterans Home above Lock and Dam #1 on the west side of the river just south of the bridge. Bring binoculars. 1y
  •   trebor4567 Great as always, keep it up! 1y
  •   rburmaster @trebor4567 That's what she said. 1y
  •   hollyrhenson He was stopping by to check on you! 1y
  •   rburmaster @hollyrhenson I think you're right. And, his momma was keeping a close eye on me from a little ways away too. 1y
  •   conspiringwithnature Lucky! 1y
  •   neebelung Such gorgeous birds... 1y

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rburmaster This is one way I celebrate my birthday. Banding baby ospreys. Here's a five week old stretching his talons. 1y

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Amaro Robert Burmaster 😎
rburmaster This morning, I was invited to help band chicks at one of the osprey nests I monitor. Great experience, as always. Here is a 4 week old chick banded and ready to go back in the nest. Even at four weeks, the talons are already nearing adult size (about the size of your outstretched hand). And check out that full crop sticking out right below the neck. The crop acts as a storage chamber for extra food. This little one is well fed and will be ready to fledge in a few weeks. 1y

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rburmaster It's Falcon Friday and Father's Day is straight ahead. I've been continuing to monitor osprey nests for two local programs. All but one of the 7 nests I watch are active this season. And, almost all of them have hatched chicks very recently. Once the chicks hatch, mom is on constant sentry duty on the nest to protect from predators (owls, raccoons, etc) and shield the chicks from the elements. And, osprey dads are now on full-time fishing duty to keep their families (and themselves) well fed. With very fast-growing chicks, that means fish after fish after fish delivery. Fun to watch and listen. Have a great weekend! 2y
  •   sampiette What an awesome shot! Looks like he caught a goldfish! 2y
  •   rburmaster @sampiette Thanks! Yes, I'm pretty sure it is a giant goldfish. This nest is not far from the Carlson Towers in Minnetonka. I watched a male osprey from another nearby nest bring back a HUGE goldfish yesterday.I think they've found a target-rich environment in the man-made ponds by the towers.  2y
  •   diegojr terrific capture :-) I have yet to be so fortunate with spotting osprey around high bridge area that I roam 2y
  •   rburmaster @diegojr Thanks. I know there are osprey nests over in the St Paul area. But not sure where. Check for osprey reports on ebird to help zero in on them. They are fun to watch and photograph. 2y
  •   carllacey Awesome! 1y

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rburmaster Did someone say it's Fowlcon....er uh Falcon Friday? 2y

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rburmaster Falcon Friday! Order up! Here's another photo from the Spring Raptor Release event. Can you guess what it is? 2y

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rburmaster This is my favorite photo taken at the raptor release a couple weekends ago. Pi, a 4th year bald eagle, displaying his newly grown first round of adult white head feathers. Works well in black and white. 2y

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rburmaster Somebody say "Falcon Friday"? Order up! - Meet Juneau, a resident education bird at the U of MN Raptor Center. I took this photo at the Spring Raptor Release event last weekend. Happy Falcon Friday! Have a great weekend. 2y

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rburmaster Discovered this young explorer out in the woods yesterday. Can you guess what it is? 2y

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X-Pro II Robert Burmaster 😎
rburmaster Yet another April snow storm warning means I'm feeling owly today. Here's a Great Horned Owl I photographed at the Duluth Zoo a few weeks ago. 2y

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rburmaster It Falcon Friday. How bout an osprey? Look carefully, and see if you can guess what he's caught. I watched this guy and his family last summer. And, they were quite resourceful at hunting. #birdfreaks 2y

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