Date: 5/16/18 2:34 pm From: Bill McGovern via VA-bird <va-bird...> Subject: [VA-bird] Ft Belvoir--- Nesting Ospreys and Migrating Orioles
It's May, so the ospreys are nesting on Ft. Belvoir, and, at the same time, migrating orioles are passing through. Fortunately for birders, most of the action for these two birds is in one small area---down by the water, close to the Outdoor Recreation building on Warren Rd, extending from the archery range to the new RV Park. The ospreys are more skittish than in previous years, because the center of this area was closed to automobile traffic about 5 years ago. The birds used to tolerate people and vehicles quite well---but less so now.
There appear to be at least 11 active osprey nests down by the water, plus 2 in the upper meadow on Warren Rd. Most of these nests are on man-made platforms, though one nest is in a tree. Another four nests are in the center of Ft Belvoir, on the lighted ball field. There are also a number of failures started by young birds.
About the orioles, I saw more than two dozen, most of them young orchards, plus a few Baltimores, but they are difficult to count, since they criss-cross every which way-it's hard to avoid double counting. Also making things interesting were a few flycatchers, warblers, bluebirds, and many tree swallows.
For those who haven't been to Ft. Belvoir, it takes about 5 mins to get a pass at the Visitors' Center, which is accessed by using Tulley Gate (the southernmost gate).