Rick spotted this handsome Osprey overlooking the marsh. Regal and powerful, he perched in a large tree slowly scanning the water below, seemingly keeping an eye on the flock of Blue-winged Teal and American Coots weaving in and out of the shallows. He stayed in the tree for over 45 minutes just observing his territory, nonchalant and unhurried. Finally, he took off in flight and circled around to fly over the lake.
Osprey at Muscatatuck National Wildlife Refuge
In the following photo, you can see the Osprey’s nictitating membrane pulled over his eye. Ospreys, as well as all raptors, have this transparent “third” eyelid to protect their eyes when hunting and eating. They also use it to keep the eyes moist and clean the eyes if something gets in them that causes irritation. The nictitating membrane moves horizontally across the eye instead of vertically like the regular eyelid.