Highway Osprey Nest Monitoring

Project Description

Since 2011, ECAS member, Kevin Smith, has been monitoring Osprey (Pandion haliaetus) nests along Highway 97/26 from Warm Springs to the north end of Bend. He checks these nests throughout the nesting season, from late April through August. Knowing that nests near busy roadways and railways are often near the electrical grid, he monitors not only nesting success, but proximity to a source of potential electrocution of Ospreys. Kevin keeps records of Osprey nesting pairs and nestlings and reports to power companies (Portland General Electric, Pacific Power, Central Electric Company) if there are any dangerous situations.

Why We Do This and What We Have Learned

We have learned that Ospreys are highly territorial and nest where they want. When attempts are made to move them from their choice of a nesting place such as a power pole they sometimes resist by re-building on the same power pole. In several instances, when notified of Ospreys found nesting on power poles, the power companies have installed elevated platforms nearby with some success.

Project Focus Areas

  • Population Monitoring
  • Bird Conservation
  • Behavioral Study
  • Habitat Restoration/Improvement

Would You Like to Volunteer?

No volunteers are needed for direct observation of nesting platforms. However, you can greatly assist Osprey survival by contacting Kevin Smith directly if you see Ospreys building a nest on a power pole. If possible, note the location, the power pole number, and the company to which it belongs. Kevin will relay the location to the appropriate power company so they can address the situation.

Kevin Smith: kevinsmithnaturephotos@gmail.com  541-350-3895