Osprey Live Stream, Stockton, Missouri

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Empire District Electric Company and Mid Central Contractors invite you to join us in celebrating the return of osprey to Stockton Lake. Enjoy this brief peek into the lives of this osprey family! But, please be aware, at times, nature can be difficult to watch.

New Time Lapse Feature

On February 24, 2015, Empire moved the osprey nest from one of our transmission towers to this newly built nesting box. The pair had a nest burn last summer after coming in contact with an energized electric line. The fire also did damage to the transmission tower and line, interrupting electric service. This new home for the pair of osprey is meant to be a safe nesting alternative while also increasing service reliability for Empire customers. Click here to view photos of the installation of the nesting platform.

Above is a live stream of the nesting box. The box is approximately 4-feet by 4-feet and approximately 70-feet high. Although the power lines are visible in the background, the nesting box is approximately 50 feet away from the power lines. This nest also has night vision provided by infrared light illumination. Birds and humans cannot see infrared light, so the osprey are not bothered at night by the infrared light illumination. The cameras are powered by two solar panels. If there are several days in a row of overcast skies, the camera may run out of battery backup. But, once the sun returns, the camera will be operational again.

Note to viewer: Images presented on this live stream are the property of the Empire District Electric Company and may be used for educational and non-commercial purposes. Images may not be sold.

About Ospreys

Osprey are uncommon statewide, most are spring and fall migrants but a few nest here. Ospreys are up to 24 inches long, with a 5- to 6-foot wingspan. They are midway between eagle size and large hawk size.

They eat almost exclusively fish they have caught, including carp, catfish, perch, shad and suckers. Also called “fish hawks” or “fish eagles,” osprey usually fly back and forth over—and 50 to 200 feet above—the water while searching for fish. When an osprey spies a fish, it hovers a moment before diving and plunging into the water feet first. Often it will completely submerge except for the wings.

Osprey reach maturity at age 3 or 4 and usually nest near water on a tall structure, such as a tree or rocky bluff. Like bald eagles, they generally mate for life. Nests are built of sticks and miscellaneous other materials. Two to four eggs are produced and hatch in about 5 weeks. The chicks fledge after about 9 weeks. Both parents care for the young. Osprey live about 7-10 years but have been known to live for 25.

(Source: Missouri Department of Conservation)

For more information about osprey, visit the Missouri Department of Conservation website here.


Comments 1,650

  1. Gail

    If you click on the link in the paragraph below the nest where it says “click here”
    and click on each picture they will enlarge. Great pics….and the ones of the
    installation on the platform really give you a good idea of it’s size…..

  2. Mike Gordon

    Hey Everyone,

    Blame the weather. The cameras have been consistently shutting down during the early evening hours. This results from the lack of adequate sunshine to fully charge the batteries. One of the big challenges of solar energy. When adequate sunlight arrives today (HOPEFULLY) they should reactivate. It looks like this weather pattern is going to continue a bit longer, so this may be the situation for a while. If we get 3 to 5 days of sunshine we should get a good charge on the batteries and be able to carry through the evening hours.

    Thank you everyone for watching.

  3. Sharon

    Ms Osprey was walking around with a large tuft of grass in her beak trying to find just the right spot to put it while walking into and tripping over those two cross pieces. If birds can get annoyed………that would probably do it.

    1. Keeter

      Well, I don’t think any woman wants two big “whatever those are” sticking up out of the middle of their floors do they?

      1. Gail

        LOL, you two!!
        At least the tube things are getting shorter….good measurement for how much
        nesting material has been added…..

          1. Gail

            The nest was originally on an electric pole and the O’s had built their around the tubes.
            When the men moved the nest they wanted to keep it intact so they left the tubes in it.

  4. john farris

    Osprey at nest at 11:36 trying hard to pull out the two cross pieces. No luck so far and she/he was pulling very hard on them.

  5. Mary Allen-Rippy

    Thanks Gail & Oldollady for info. I had the female as being the largest. Didn’t realize females talked more,
    but fits pretty good I think!

  6. oldollady

    there is a facebook page with some great pictures i think you have to join,but worth it <3
    Stockton Mo. Ospreys is the name

  7. Mary Allen-Rippy

    Gail, which one is Mom & which is Dad. When they R both there, I think I have it, & when only one on nest or perch I’m not sure.

    1. oldollady

      the mom will have more brown on her breast-called a necklace. she is the one ‘talking’ all the time,so far that is how i have id’ed her

      (the male is silent unless he lets out a warning whistle)

        1. Gail

          Female is also usually larger which is hard to tell with the camera angle.
          You were probably correct this morning, Mary, they may have changed
          places and had a different fish by the time I saw them an hour later…….

          1. Gail

            I think our male has some spots on his chest also, but she has more.
            There are a couple of other things about their markings that I’m keeping an eye on to see if they are
            good things to go by to tell them apart.

  8. Kris

    One osprey continues nest building activity this morning while the other sits on the perch eating a fish. I wonder if our original male has returned or if the female has taken a new mate?

  9. Kris

    Two osprey on the nest, one inching closer to the other. Both then engage in a sort of dance. Suddenly, both fly off and a third osprey lands in the nest flapping its wings as if to claim the site.

  10. jean

    I hadn’t checked in for a few days. Just came to the website and saw one fly in at 8:00 am. Just sitting there looking around. How do you tell male from female?

  11. Mary Allen-Rippy

    One on perch 11:15 am. Flew off. Came back & landed on electric pole. A 2nd one flying over tree line.
    I have not seen 2 on nest at same time.

  12. Kris

    Our female flew in and landed on the perch. Four ospreys then flew in from the lake and landed on the utility pole to our right. Two of them stayed. Is our girl being courted?

    1. Gail

      Oh dear…..was hoping that was our man!!
      Sorry about my earlier cryptic message….had just
      looked in on my phone while out and didn’t have
      time to get a photo or type….

  13. Greg Swick

    A few miles east of this Cam is an Osprey on the nest: where Hwy 215 crosses Stockton Reservoir just west of Bona. It was first reported to eBird on March 10.

  14. Mary Allen-Rippy

    I saw her on perch & then drop to nest approx 9:25 am. I also saw a large bird flying above tree line &
    Appeared over the water. I waited to see if it would come to nest. It did not. Then she flew off. I waited again to find out if she would come back. She did not. Nest empty again. As they say “timing is everything”
    We wait & wait! ☺️

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