News and Activities

Everett Harbor, Washington, Osprey Project

Date Posted: January 17, 2003

During routine banding operations in July 2001, local birders discovered a deformed osprey nestling and three dead osprey nestlings in the Everett Harbor area. Last year 26 breeding pairs of osprey were documented in the Everett Harbor area. Everett Harbor is a highly industrialized embayment about 30 miles north of Seattle and contains a capped Superfund sight, Tulalip Landfill, in the vicinity where the deformed and dead nestlings were discovered. The Western Washington Fish and Wildlife Office (WWFWO) in cooperation with U.S. Geological Survey (BRD/BEST programs) will study the osprey population in this area with the aid of local bird experts during the 2002 breeding season. Project funds are from the BRD/BEST programs. Collectively, we will monitor reproduction and track and observe osprey to determine their key prey species. Current documentation suggests that the birds feed primarily on flat fish found in the area such as starry flounder and English sole. We will also collect fresh eggs from approximately half of the nesting pairs and analyze for contaminants. The WWFWO will also partner with agencies of the Puget Sound Ambient Monitoring Program to collect and analyze sediment and fish samples in the Everett Harbor areas surrounding the nesting birds. These data will hopefully shed some light as to the cause and prevalence of the deaths noted last year.

Cindy (Chaffee) Schexnider or Jay Davis, 360-753-9440.


Last updated: June 12, 2015