Monday, September 27, 2010

Wargo Nature Center

This year I decided to branch out a bit and check out some new places to do my photography. One of those places was the Wargo Nature Center in Hugo, MN. Wargo is part of the 5,000 acre Rice Creek Chain of Lakes Regional Park Reserve.
The nature center is located on a peninsula over looking George Watch Lake. Because of its accessibility to the lake it offers recreation opportunities, such as canoe, kayak or snow shoe rental, as well as nature watching.
The big reason for my visits was the occupied osprey platform. There are numerous osprey platforms around the Twin Cities, most of which were occupied and many closer to my house then Wargo, but Wargo is one of the best locations for photographing the osprey. Wargo is the only location that I know of in the Twin Cities with a blind set up to watch the nest. The blind has a good view of the poll and it is located south of the nest so the sun is always somewhat at your back.
After my many visits some of the people working at the visitors center began to recognize me and let me know about the upcoming banding. It was quite exciting to be there to photograph the banding of three new osprey chicks.
Mom and dad were pretty excited too, but it was a much different type of excitement. They circled in the sky above us as the invading predators took their babies from the nest. In the end though the osprey were victorious as the chicks were returned and the invaders driven away.
About six weeks later the chicks were full grown and ready to fledge. The adults had their work cut out for them trying to catch enough food to feed three full sized osprey plus themselves. Eventually the young were able to find their own food so there was no more reason for them to return to the nest which meant it was the end of my osprey photography but there was still plenty of wildlife at Wargo to photograph and hopefully next year the osprey will return.

10 comments:

"Lillagul" said...

Wow what a great experiance to come that close to the Osprey chicks.
Great capture both for you and the Ospreys on the last picture :)

Sylvia K said...

Fantastic captures! And to see the Osprey chicks so close! Incredible. Your last shot is truly breathtaking! Wow! What a shot that one is! I love it! Looks as though you've found a great place!! Thanks for sharing! Hope you have a great week!

Sylvia

Mama Zen said...

That last shot is amazing!

Yogi♪♪♪ said...

Great photos. I really like the last one with the Osprey bringing a fish to the nest.

Trish ~ ♥ ~ said...

It is no longer a "Silent Spring". Thank you Rachel Carson.

Country Mouse Studio said...

Great shots, this looks like a wonderful place to visit

Caroline said...

What an experience for you. And wonderfully captured. We get ospreys here in Cape Town too - rarely - but I think they migrate from Scotland and northern Europe.

Kcalpesh said...

Nicely captured moments!


Pixellicious Photos

ladyfi said...

Wow - that last shot is amazing!

Junneth said...

Wonderful post!
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