Through the efforts of the Audubon Center for Birds of Prey, about 650 injured birds are taken in each year. Since they started, over 12,000 birds have been helped, with about 40% of these being returned to the wild! Visit their web site by clicking here.
We sponsor an Osprey through the center, a bird that is very visible in Cedar Key. Commonly known as "fish hawks", you can spot Ospreys in Cedar Key throughout the year. They feed almost exclusively on fish which they catch by diving feet first from about 50 to 150 feet above the water.
Their preferred nesting spot is on top of any tall, stable structure. The typical natural setting for an Osprey nest is in the top of a dead tree.
The Osprey pictured on the left is "Smedley." He arrived at the Audubon's Center for Birds of Prey in 1998. Still a nestling, he had a broken, badly infected wing.
His wing never healed well enough to allow him to survive on his own in the wild. He is glove-trained and serves as an "ambassador," helping our species learn about the importance of his species. Ospreys are designated as a "species of special concern" by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.