A screenshot from a live video stream Tuesday of an Osprey nest in Independence. People are invited to join in an educational live session from 11 a.m. to noon each Thursday to learn more about osprey.

INDEPENDENCE — The City of Independence and Pacific Power invite children and parents to participate in a weekly distance-learning event to learn more about a pair of osprey, known as Ollie and Olga, from 11 a.m. to noon each Thursday, starting April 9.

A webcam is streaming 24/7 on http://ospreycam.online, but the live events will give people a chance to interact with experts while maintaining a safe distance.

“We’re all in the same situation right now with schools closed and stay-at-home orders in place,” said Courtney Williams, Downtown Manager for the City of Independence. “This is a great way for us engage with each other and to experience these fascinating osprey while learning about their habitat, their important place in the food web and why year-after-year they make their home and raise their family in Independence’s Riverview Park.”

Osprey build their nests high off the ground away from predators. Sometimes confused for bald eagles, osprey are also considered skilled hunters often diving from heights of 30 to 100 feet to catch fish, which is their primary food. 

Ollie and Olga’s current nesting pole was installed by Pacific Power with help from the City of Independence and The Independence Hotel as a safe place for the osprey to build a nest and raise their chicks during their seasonal stay, according to Eric Kasprzak, senior environmental analyst with Pacific Power.

“We worked closely with the city of Independence to identify a suitable location for the Osprey” said Kasprzak. “This osprey nest platform is a great example of partnership in action and seeing these birds return year after year has given us a direct way to learn a lot about their species in the Willamette Valley.”

Sanne Godfrey can be reached at sgodfrey@nrtoday.com or 541-957-4203. Follow her on Twitter @sannegodfrey.

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