The Osprey VS the Black-billed Magpie

Osprey - Black-billed Magpie Fish FightOsprey – Black-billed Magpie Fish Fight – Nikon D200, f6.s, 1/1250, ISO 640, -0.3 EV, Nikkor 200-400mm VR with 1.4x TC at 257mm, natural light, not baited (OK the Osprey baited the Magpie!)

In May of this year I camped at Antelope Flat in the Flaming Gorge National recreation Area and near the boat ramp there was an Osprey nest. One of the poles near the nest seemed to be a perch that the Ospreys used to eat their prey on and this Osprey came in with a fish. Enter subject number 2, a Black-billed Magpie. Magpies are opportunistic feeders and it appeared that the Magpie was going to try to swipe the fish from the Osprey.

The Osprey won!


P.S.: My mother is visiting me on her first trip to Utah, she is going to love it! I’ll be slow to view and comment on your blogs, thanks for understanding. Please feel free to share this post with your friends and family.

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About Mia McPherson

I am a nature lover, wildlife watcher and a bird photographer. I first become serious about bird photography when I moved to Florida in 2004 and it wasn’t long before I was hooked (addicted is more like it). My move to the Salt Lake area of Utah was a great opportunity to continue observing their behavior and photographing birds. My approach is to photograph the birds without disturbing their natural behavior. I don't bait, use set ups or call them in. I use Nikon gear and has multiple camera bodies and lenses.


  1. Thank you all for your wonderful comments. Kim, I’m glad you enjoy my humor. Dan, I think Magpies are a touch crazy, or bold. Ingrid, it must have been something to see the crow and osprey fall asleep like they did.

  2. This is great. Earlier this year, I watched what appeared to be an impasse between Osprey and crow. They sat near each other on a utility pole, and both fell asleep, the Osprey with partial fish still clasped in his talon.

  3. “The Osprey baited the Magpie” – I love your humour Mia. I hope your mum’s enjoying her visit.

  4. That’s a catch, excellent photo.

  5. Neat capture. Brave Magpie, perhaps a little crazy too.

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