Over the last few months, we have had the great fortune to take a peek inside the wonderful world of wildlife thanks to the stunning photography of William Straite. We’ve witnessed the birth of twin Eaglets and Osprey chicks. Watched an Eaglet grow from infant to its first flight. And saw an aerial dogfight as the Osprey defended their nest against an intruder. Unfortunately the final chapter to the two stories is one of sorrow and anger.

First, the story sure to make you fume. William's stunning photographs come from his one on one connection with mother nature. He relaxes by sitting in the woods and watching wildlife for several hours, often the Osprey mates who had built a life and family just outside of Rome.

When I last went over .... I was in total shock and so disappointed as the entire Osprey Nest had been destroyed and was now only a pile of sticks scattered on the ground.  I guess "As the Bird Turns" finally ends here.

We used the term, "As the Bird Turns," jokingly when the two Osprey began building their nest and mating. A third rogue male Osprey tried to move in and take over the nest, divebombing it on several occasions. The couple successfully defended their home, reinforced the nest, and raised two chicks.
It was all for naught, as the nest is now gone. The good news is it appears the chicks were old enough to survive the upheaval.
To quote, William, "Guess it can't get worse.... guess again!"
Two days later he went to check on the home of the twin eaglets we have watched grow from fuzz balls who couldn't stand to taking their first flight. William estimates he had "80 - 90 hours invested in watching this nest."
The nest is roughly 15 years old and produced about 25 Eaglets over the years.  The tree in which the nest sat has remarkably been struck by lightening 6 or 7 times over the years and did have some significant signs of damage, but the tree and nest stood proud.
Apparently during the last round of storms, the nest took a direct lightening hit knocking most of it out of the tree, what was left, fell to the ground the following day. He spoke with the land owner, who said the Eagles made it out safely and were perched in near by pine trees.
At least this was mother nature taking her course rather than some thoughtless human having no respect for wildlife. While the families of birds all survived, no one knows better than William what a rare opportunity we had to witness life in the wild.
What a shame as these nests and these Birds were uniquely located in a way that it allowed such an outstanding view into their nests and such insight into their lives....  I can't believe we will be that gifted again.... Fair well dear friends....

Tragedy Strikes Eagle and Osprey Nests

Lightening destroys Eagle's nests. Someone destroyed Osprey's nest in Rome.

Osprey Pair's Nest Under Attack in Rome

A male and female Osprey, mating and nesting eggs for weeks is attacked and taken over by another male bird.

Eaglet Born on Susquehanna River Takes First Flight

American Bald Eaglet flies for the first time