An online resource based on the award-winning nature guide

Sibling Rivalry

The male Osprey typically provides fish for the chicks, often feeding first and then presenting the remainder to the female who tears the fish apart into small pieces and feeds it to the chicks.  When food is delivered, there can be significant aggression on the part of the older Osprey nestlings if the parent hasn’t fed them in a while.

Incubation begins with the first egg, so they hatch sequentially, producing a brood of chicks that are not  the same exact age.  Once dominance is established, the older chicks feed until satiated and then allow the younger ones to eat.  If food is scarce, it’s not unusual for the younger chicks to starve to death, but if food is plentiful, a peaceable kingdom reigns.

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4 responses

  1. Alice

    Another awesome photo! Cool eyes & tongue. A great deal in life revolves around food.

    July 23, 2020 at 8:29 am

  2. Pat Thomas

    i love the look in the eyes of that chick not getting fed. thank you so much for sharing these amazing pictures and information

    July 23, 2020 at 9:54 am

  3. Leslie English

    welcome back Mary!
    you were sorely missed. I treasure the moments of joy every time I look at your email.
    My grandsons are finally old enough to get your children’s books, I’m happy to report.
    warm wishes,
    Leslie English

    July 23, 2020 at 12:16 pm

    • Alice

      And they are such wonderful & informative books! Awesome photos!

      July 23, 2020 at 7:25 pm

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