The eggs have hatched!
George and Gracie, the famed North Fork osprey couple whose lives are documented via webcam on ospreyzone.com, have welcomed three new little ones to their nest. And this year, the Osprey Zone administrators are asking the public to name the newly hatched chicks.
“George and Gracie have returned this summer, and there are three NEW little ones who need names,” Osprey Zone said in an email this week. “We are asking for your help, and will be selecting our favorites from your submissions. The winner will get some cool merchandise from the Osprey Zone Store!”
Fans of the site are encouraged to submit one, two or three of their favorite names though a special “Name the Babies” form on the site, available here.
George and Gracie found fame in 2015 when Tommy Aprea and his neighbor, Paul Henry, discovered an osprey resting on top of a television tower behind their houses. Henry and Aprea decided to construct a platform to attract ospreys and soon enough George and Gracie began nesting upon the deck.
After attracting the couple, Aprea and Henry decided to install a webcam to capture the birds’ daily life and nesting activities. Soon enough, the men created their own website, ospreyzone.com, sponsored by Aprea’s company, Tax Reduction Services, and it quickly became a hit.
Of course web traffic slows once the birds retire south for the winter, but George and Gracie returned in May and all eyes, once again, were back on the couple and, eventually, their newest set of eggs.
In preparation for this season, Aprea emptied the nest and lowered it 20 feet so that the birds could build a new home for themselves. When the ospreys returned, they did just that—creating another nest so Gracie could lay three more eggs inside.
Currently, the website offers a live camera for the public to enjoy, and some individuals were even lucky enough to see George and Gracie’s newest additions come into the world. Viewers can also observe the ospreys heading out to hunt and eating their fishy prey upon returning to the nest.
Ospreyzone.com also hosts a documentary about ospreys called Pandion.
To see George and Gracie, and their three as-yet-unnamed hatchlings, live, and to try your hand at naming them, visit ospreyzone.com.