Thursday, August 28, 2014
FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

Mare Island’s Osprey Days a success story

By
From page A3 | June 30, 2014 |

Mare Island Osprey Days

An osprey lands beside another on top of a crane tower where their nest sits just below, June 29, 2014, on Mare Island in Vallejo. (Steve Reczkowski/Daliy Republic)

VALLEJO — The osprey is making a comeback.

The large raptor with an almost exclusive appetite for fish has settled in scattered locations among the decrepid fixtures and structures of Mare Island. What once was a thriving U.S. Naval Shipyard has evolved into a manmade habitat for the sea hawk that has been absent from the surrounding shoreline.

“One-hundred-and-fifty years of Navy has gone wild,” said Myrna Hayes, volunteer Preserve manager with the Mare Island Heritage Trust.

Birdwatchers and citizen scientists were among the crowds that flocked to the Mare Island Shoreline Heritage Preserve this weekend for the second annual San Francisco Bay Osprey Days.

Hayes estimated 900 to 1,000 visitors ventured to the festival for guided hikes, boat tours and presentations all centered on the osprey – a hawk that can measure 2 feet in length with a wingspan up to 72 inches.

“There’s this passion all over the world over the same bird,” she said.

Diane Rooney, who helped lead a viewing hike Sunday in the preserve, said there are many qualities that make an osprey unique.

The osprey is adapted to fishing, she said. Its reversable talons allow the hawk to secure its prey in an aerodynamic manner.

“It looks like they’re surfing on a fish,” she said.

Mare Island’s scattered osprey nests are found atop light poles, industrial cranes, electricity towers and the flattened fronds of a palm tree.

Blogger and photographer Richard Bangert, of Alameda, participated in the guided hike and saw ospreys on various light poles and the irregular palm tree.

“Mostly (they were) just sitting around – preening,” he said.

Tony Brake, of the Golden Gate Raptor Observatory, said the bird is relatively tolerant of humans and its young are known to return after a couple of years to the established nests, which are frequently found on company property.

“The problem with osprey – they tend to build nests on manmade structures,” he said.

Brake said there are methods to protect nest sites and ways to provide an alternative nesting platform as part of a deterrent process.

“We’re trying to get businesses . . . to use these practices,” he said.

Brake hosted presentations this weekend with fellow Observatory member Harvey Wilson titled “Osprey in the Bay: Comeback or Arrival?”

The duo conducted a survey in 2013 that counted the young osprey and nests within 100 meters of the San Francisco Bay shoreline.

Wilson said in the beginning of 1999 only one osprey pair nested on Mare Island. Last year, there were 44 young osprey along the bay’s shoreline, he said.

“The number of ospreys has increased year-by-year all around the bay,” he said.

The bird’s breeding boundary was considered to be farther north in the area of Marin County, Wilson said.

“Since 1999, the boundary is slowly moving south through San Francisco Bay,” he said.

Wilson attributed improving environmental conditions and efforts by municipalities, agencies and organizations to the osprey’s success.

“The bay recovered ecologically and maintained a high standard of environmental quality,” he said. “It’s really a success story.”

Reach Adrienne Harris at 427-6956 or aharris@dailyrepublic.net. Follow her on Twitter at www.twitter.com/aharrisdr.

Adrienne Harris

Adrienne Harris

Adrienne joined the Daily Republic in September 2009. She earned her journalism degree at the University of Florida in 2005 and has worked at newspapers in Fort Pierce, Fla.; Las Cruces, N.M.; and El Paso, Texas.
LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | 2 comments

The Daily Republic does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

  • CruikshanksJune 30, 2014 - 4:48 am

    Great pics DR!

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • Diane RooneyJune 30, 2014 - 8:58 am

    Thanks so much Adrienne to you and Steve for coming out to the festival to see the ospreys (and osprey watchers!) and share the news with the community! All the best, Diane.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
.

Solano News

 
Locke an unparalleled universe in the Delta

By Susan Winlow | From Page: A1 | Gallery

 
Review set for Vacaville fitness center suit

By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A3

 
Fairfield motorcyclist hurt in Beck Avenue crash

By Ian Thompson | From Page: A3

 
Logue misses meet with Libertarians in Fairfield

By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A4

 
Fairfield police log: Aug. 26, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A5

Suisun City police log: Aug. 26, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A5

 
Chamber event looks at health care law

By Barry Eberling | From Page: B5 | Gallery

Winterhawk Winery up for auction

By Barry Eberling | From Page: B5 | Gallery

 
.

US / World

Boy hurt in California quake: ‘I should be dead’

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1 | Gallery

 
California Senate passes gun restraining order

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

Lawmakers approve groundwater management bill

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
California sets ride-sharing insurance standards

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

Feds allow logging after huge California wildfire

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
California beach town sees flooding from hurricane

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

Mom pleads for release of captive US journalist

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6 | Gallery

 
Israeli premier, Hamas declare victory in Gaza war

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6 | Gallery

Q-and-A on Westerners who join the fight in Syria

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

 
Sources: US considering new relief mission in Iraq

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

Shooting by 9-year-old girl stirs debate over guns

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

 
US to consider spousal abuse in immigration claims

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

UK sex abuse report prompts outrage, reflection

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

 
Dad acquitted in slaying of driver who killed sons

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

Q&A: Few laws govern children at shooting range

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

 
.

Opinion

 
Signs of possible healing in Ferguson

By Jay Ambrose | From Page: A11

Editorial Cartoons: Aug. 28, 2014

By Kim Durbin | From Page: A11

 
Let’s improve entertainment control units

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A11

.

Living

Community Calendar: Aug. 28, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A2

 
.

Entertainment

.

Sports

Fuld’s homer in 9th lifts A’s over Astros 5-4

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

 
Posey hits game-ending 2-run homer for Giants

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

 
Maria Sharapova comes through in 3 sets at US Open

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

Raiders rookie QB Derek Carr to start vs. Seahawks

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

 
IndyCar sets April 12 New Orleans date

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

No. 23 UNC suspends 4 players for opener

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Clippers sign Doc Rivers to 5-year extension

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Cal needs more from its running game

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Stanford’s Kevin Hogan a ‘stabilizing agent’ at QB

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2 | Gallery

Chicago’s Little League champs return as heroes

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2 | Gallery

 
NFL suspends Browns star WR Gordon for 2014 season

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Keenum, Savage to settle Texans’ backup QB duel vs. 49ers

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
USC’s Shaw admits to lying about injuries, rescue

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Raiders hope rebuild pays immediate dividends

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

 
After trio of near misses, 49ers chase Super Bowl

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

.

Business

US economy forecast to grow by 1.5 percent in 2014

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6

 
Reports: FBI probes JPMorgan hack

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7

Time Warner Cable says outages largely resolved

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7

 
Video games come of age as spectator sport

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7

Malaysia Airlines set for shakeup after disasters

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7

 
IMF chief Lagarde under investigation in France

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7

SEC adopts rules on loan-backed securities

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7

 
Stocks drift higher; S&P 500 holds on to 2,000

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7

.

Obituaries

Fernanda Dee Villarosa

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

 
Herman P. Sorensen

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

Lyle R.C. Cullum

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A4

 
Frank W. Moy Jr.

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

Gary Allen Person

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

 
.

Comics

B.C.

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Frank and Ernest

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8