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On the Maurice River, Volunteers Save the Osprey

Once nearly wiped out by pesticides, the majestic bird is making a comeback.

Credit: Todd Vachon/WHYY
Osprey chick.

Jane Morton Galetto has lived on the Maurice River in Cumberland County since she was 10, so she knows the river’s secrets. And in a story and audio by WHYY NewsWorks, an NJ Spotlight partner, Galetto shares some of those secrets on a boat ride to visit osprey chicks not yet ready to fly.

The osprey has staged a comeback in New Jersey since pesticides and habitat loss nearly wiped it out. But the return of the bird to the marshes and shores of the Garden State has required help from Galetto and other volunteers.

Before Galetto and her husband began building osprey platforms on the banks of the Maurice, the river was home to only one nesting pair. But over the past three decades, the volunteer group Citizens United to Protect the Maurice River has built 100 nesting platforms.

In Volunteers help the osprey stage a comeback in New Jersey, reporter Carolyn Beeler describes how Galetto bands two chicks inside a large nest, just one of the many tasks she has undertaken to help the osprey population climb back to its pre-DDT levels.

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