The osprey are back at Whitestone Country Inn
Having a country inn on a dead end road surrounded by a wildlife waterfowl refuge violates the conventional wisdom of location, location, location. However the advantages far outweigh
any disadvantages. I was reminded today of the value of our location
as a sat on the porch and looked across the Tennessee River at the Smokys.
The osprey have returned to the Paint Rock Refuge this week. Even though they migrate for life they do not migrate together. The males left last fall before the females and the young. Apparently they
winter hundreds of miles apart in South America. But in March the osprey make the 3000-4000 mile flight back to the same nest they left last fall. The cries I listened to today are more numerous than usual as the mates find each other after months apart. Mating follows almost immediately (surprise! surprise!) Both parents protect the 3 or 4 eggs for about 35 days. Certainly
the young will arrive by April.
This area has
one of the largest colony of osprey in the Southeast. The shallow waters here on Watts Bar Lake provides great fishing for
osprey, eagles and great blue heron. In fact, the ornithologist at TVA in Knoxville says there are at least 175 bird species that nest in this region.
Spring is a great time to come to Whitestone and enjoy the renewal of spring Birding is the largest participatory outdoor activity in the US. We have canoes, paddleboats, hiking trails and binoculars ready for
some of the best birding opportunities around.