UPDATE: Moving of Osprey Nest In Beaufort County Ruled Not Illegal

By: Natalie Kaplan Email
By: Natalie Kaplan Email

According to Beaufort County Wildlife Officers the man who moved an Osprey nest did not break the law.

The huge nest is resting on top of a barge parked at McCotters Marina in Washington. That barge was sitting about a half a mile away in Broad Creek for the past six months, it was moved to the marina last Monday.

The barge’s owner, Ivan Sawyer says when the barge was moved the Osprey was nowhere to be found and there weren’t any babies in the nest; however, some marina residents say that’s not true.

After an investigation, authorities determined Sawyer did not violate the law and no charges will be filed against him. Wildlife Officer Anthony Cox tells WITN News the Osprey bird is protected but it’s not endangered, threatened, or have special concerns.

The nest will remain at the marina for a few more days to see if the birds return, if they don’t, officers say Mr. Sawyer can then do as he pleases.


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Wildlife Officers are investigating the move of an Osprey nest in Beaufort County and whether it was illegal. According to the U.S Fish & Wildlife Service it is illegal to remove or move an active nest.

The huge nest is currently resting on top of a barge parked at McCotters Marina in Washington. That barge was sitting about a half a mile away in Broad Creek for the past six months, it was moved to the marina on Friday.

The barge’s owner, Ivan Sawyer says when the barge was moved the Osprey was nowhere to be found and there weren’t any babies in the nest; however, some marina residents say that’s no true.

When Regina Dickens went for her normal walk on Saturday morning she told WITN News she saw a man trying to shake the nest off of the top of the barge. Dickens says the Osprey was literally swooping down from the nest towards the man trying to protect her children. Dickens says she called local authorities to handle the situation.

On Sunday a Wildlife Officer climbed to the top of the barge, looked into the nest, and realized there weren’t any babies inside. Officers say an investigation is now underway.

Sawyer tells us he moved the barge because he needs to use it for his business, but will comply with authorities and leave it untouched until an investigation is complete.

According to the U.S Fish & Wildlife Service website someone caught moving an active Osprey nest could face up to 6 months in jail and a $15,000 fine.


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