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Pandionidae (Osprey)

On nest

Pandion haliaetus - Osprey at nest
Photo: Derek Boddington

Pandion haliaetus is a medium large, specialist fish-eater. It has no close relatives, being the only living species of the genus Pandion, which is in turn the only genus in the bird family Pandionidae.

The Osprey is a large bird of prey common in coastal areas in most parts of Australia except Tasmania and Victoria. Common on North Stradbroke Island. In flight, wings are bowed, brown above, barred underneath. Head mainly white with stripe through eye.

On perch

Osprey
Photo: Mark Crocker

Ospreys feed on fish in clear open water. Nest inland, sometimes many kilometers, especially where rivers are tidal.

Threatened by removal of nesting sites, pollution (increased turbidity), fishing tackle (chokes the birds).