We were hoping for 4 eggs in our nest this year. While it would have been a bit unusual, we thought we had the perfect environment for that to happen. We had a young pair, bountiful food, a safe location, and well just some plain good ole luck.
However, doesn't look like it was too be. So three it is. Now we can hope that all three eggs hatch and the chicks fledged successfully.
Doug MacCarter, a noted Osprey biologist had this to say about our current nest situation:
It has been several days since the the third egg was laid. I doubt that there will be a fourth egg for this Osprey pair. During the Osprey egg laying process, each egg generally arrives within 24-48 hours of the previous egg. It is possible that a fourth egg egg may come along. The number of eggs laid depends on such factors as availability and abundance of food source as well as genetic tendencies. Studies have indicated that areas rich in available and abundant food source for Ospreys commonly produce clutch sizes of three to four eggs. Osprey in this area - Flathead Lake & Kalispell generally produce an average clutch of two to three eggs
However, it is conceivable that over time that these Ospreys at Snappys could produce a clutch size of four eggs due the availability and abundance of food in trout ponds just below their nest site.
Looking forward to the next couple weeks as we hope to see these three eggs hatch.