We don’t have a nickname.* But if we did Westport might be called “Ospreyland USA.”
Every spring we go ga-ga when the magnificent raptors return. In the past few years we’ve forced an electric utility, shopping center owner and large corporation to protect nests, move equipment — or else!
So even though our ospreys are wintering down south, we’ll highlight some important news.
The Aspetuck Land Trust owns 2 significant parcels in Sherwood Mill pond. It’s an exceptional habitat for osprey and many other bird species.
There’s long been a well-producing osprey platform on the Allen Salt Marsh Preserve there.
A couple of years ago, the Land Trust dreamed of adding another. Board member Heather Williams asked birder extraordinaire (and fellow Westporter) Tina Green for advice on a suitable spot.
Tina contacted Terry Shaw at Menunkatuck Audubon in Guilford. He donates his time building platforms around the state, and was eager to help. It would be his 99th installation in Connecticut.
Not long ago, on a calm and beautiful morning at high tide, the platform was rowed out in sections, then assembled.
Terry says it was a perfect day, a relatively easy job — and a perfect spot.
This was the 2nd osprey platform Terry built here this year. The other is behind the Nature Center at Sherwood Island State Park.
Two years ago he added the replacement platform on the southern end of the pond.
Now all we need are the ospreys to come back. Fortunately, they love Westport.
Almost as much as we love them.
* Well, we do, but “Land of Entitled Drivers” is not one we’re proud of.
(To learn more about Aspetuck Land Trust, click here. Hat tip: Nancy Moon.)