Lord Delaware North End: My Osprey and Observation Location

For anyone who has been frustrated by the fact that I haven’t posted anything on this blog for half a year, I apologize.  If you have been following my bogs on religion (Trinity Baptist Church West Point, St. Simon’s Order, Desert Fathers Dispatch), you know that I have made a rather radical change.  I have also been working toward Certification as a Virginia Master Naturalist with the Historic Rivers Chapter in Williamsburg.  In an effort to complete my required 40 volunteer hours and record my efforts of wildlife mapping, I am reviving this blog.

King and Queen of King & Queen

King and Queen of King & Queen

The location where I will record from on a weekly basis is on a small, dead end road in King & Queen County.  The road used to be Route 33 and lead into the old Lord Delaware Bridge across the Mattaponi River into King William County’s town of West Point.  It is not the prettiest of places in comparison to my workplace (York River State Park) or my favorite Chesapeake Bay haunts (Bethel Beach, Dameron Marsh, and Hughlett’s Point Natural Area Preserves).  Commercial tractor trailer trucks park here.  There is an old abandoned seafood house with only one pier that hasn’t deteriorated beyond use.  At the place where the old bridge began, there is a ton of trash left by careless anglers.

Some of the litter from careless fishermen

Some of the litter from careless fishermen

I chose this place because it is overlooked by most people of the area.  West Point has a popular and well tended nature trail.  The boat ramp and pier at Glass Island is a magnet for anglers from central Virginia (to the point where I don’t dare launch my kayak there on weekends when the croaker are running).  So the Lord Delaware North End (unless someone else has a more legal and authentic name for it, that is what I will call it) is a bit wilder than on the West Point side (and the old bridge approach there is another open trash can).  Except for the privately owned seafood house property, I have free range to clean up, collect and test plants and aquatic creatures (as there is a small stream that flows into the marsh).  I can also view wildlife, mostly birds.  There is a healthy population of Red-winged Blackbirds, various songbirds, and waterfowl.

The seasonal rulers of Lord Delaware North End is the Osprey.  There is a nesting platform beside the seafood house driveway.  This morning, I had a chance to view the pair that have recently returned to re-establish their home.  Thus far, they are gathering the large twigs for their nest and engaging in mock mating.  I observed the area from 8:00 am to 9:15 am.  The tide was rising and the sky was mostly clear with a temperature in the mid-60 degree range.  As well as the Osprey (there was one other than the nesting pair), I noticed three solo male Red-winged Blackbirds and a flock of 15-20 in flight.  There were also a small raft of Goldeneye ducks (6 to 10) and one Cormorant.  Also, there were about three or so unidentified gulls (I am thinking Ring-billed) and two American Robin.

Red-Wing

Red-Wing

Next week, probably Friday the 21st, I will post again.  I will photograph the area to give you a better idea of the place.

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