When osprey chicks hatch, they are covered in white down with brown streaks on the face, back, and wings. This is replaced by charcoal-colored down after approximately 10 days. Feathers begin to replace the down at approximately two weeks. By one month after hatching, chicks have reached 70 to 80% of the adult size. Osprey chicks fledge between 48 and 76 days old. Generally, chicks in migratory populations fledge sooner than those in non-migratory populations. After fledging, young ospreys begin to hunt on their own. However, they often continue to return to the nest to receive food from their parents for two to eight weeks after fledging. Because ospreys migrate individually, juvenile ospreys must be fully independent of their parents by the time the southward migration begins.
Canon 50D, EF70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS USM