Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Making It Right

A Bad Installation...

Each year I am contacted by more and more individuals who find osprey nesting platforms that are placed in unsuitable habitat or in areas with high levels of disturbance. This week I was contact by Harry Cottril and his daughter Laura about this platform. In my last post, I stated that I'd be installing a platform in Linwood (where this platform is located) this winter/early spring. Harry commented on my post and was wondering if I installed it. I know just about every nest structure for ospreys in the state, many of which I've climbed to band young in late June/early July. I wasn't familiar with one at the location described by Harry. In many cases people contact me for guidance on suitable locations to install osprey platforms and I am more than happy to offer guidance to avoid these types of situations!

This platform was placed in the one of the worst locations, right next to a primitive boat ramp on Patcong Creek in Linwood, NJ. Photo courtesy Harry Cottril.

I may not have installed it, but I'm planning on moving it! I have not seen the platform firsthand, but from the photo it looks like a sound platform that was built from our plans. It's current location is at the west end of Hamilton Ave. in Linwood on Patcong Creek. The land is owned by the City of Linwood as municipal open space. The location is too close to the parking area/boat ramp on the creek.

A map of Hamilton Ave. and one osprey platform to the south of Bargaintown Lake. Courtesy Google Earth.

There is a parcel to the south that is much more suitable for ospreys. It's farther away from disturbance, the main threat to ospreys at its current location. With constant disturbance, the platform would just go un-used. In the next month we will recruit some local volunteers to help us move the platform to a more suitable location.

To help address this issue, in partnership with NJ Fish and Wildlife, we are going to amend the Osprey Nesting Platform designs to include specific instructions on the proper placement of nesting platforms.

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