Nest was on part of the Robert Taylor Community Complex grounds where a lighting project was planned
Just in time for nesting season, an osprey has returned to a roost that was carefully relocated by the City of Sarasota to avoid construction impacts.
In August 2015, the City of Sarasota moved the osprey nest from a light pole on the site of a new multi-purpose field at the Robert L. Taylor Community Complex in north Sarasota. The pole was scheduled to be taken down to make way for new LED lights, city staff members say.
As crews prepared for construction, city officials — with State of Florida authorization — moved the nest to another light pole about 45 yards away on a portion of the property not affected by the project. During the relocation, the nest was empty, The Sarasota News Leader learned, as the two ospreys perched there had left it in May of last year.
It now appears that an osprey has returned to the relocated nest — which is on Osprey Avenue — just in time for the bird of prey’s nesting season. In the accompanying photo taken on Jan. 18, an osprey is seen roosting on a perch that city staff had custom-built with hope the birds of prey would return. A platform with that perch attached was installed in the new location. The branches and twigs comprising the nest were carefully removed and placed into an over-sized bag before their relocation.
“Weighing approximately 100 pounds, the bag was transported 300 feet to the other side of the athletic field and hoisted another 55 feet up in the air where the nest was reassembled atop the new platform,” according to an update from City Manager Tom Barwin on Sept. 4, 2015. The city created a video of the nest relocation that can be seen here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XmzkWXftDqg
Ospreys are federally and state protected migratory birds.