Osprey on Long Island

Long Island is home to more than 400 species of birds, including the majestic osprey. Ospreys are large, beautiful birds and a popular sight on Long Island. They have made Long Island’s coastlines and abundant fish populations home. These hunters tend to come back to the same location each year to nest and raise their young. Historically, ospreys would nest near the water in dead trees. Now they often choose other high locations such as telephone and utility poles. Together with our community partners we’ve successfully relocated and encouraged osprey pairs to build their nests away from our facilities and wires. Platforms are visible across Long Island. See where!

From the 1950s through the 1970s, Long Island’s osprey population decreased and became endangered. The effort to build safe nesting sites on or near waterways has contributed to the rise in the population of osprey. The installation of nesting platforms provides a safe nesting area for the osprey away from vital electrical infrastructure, helping PSEG Long Island maintain strong electric service reliability.

Nest Relocation

PSEG Long Island conducts annual inspections of the transmission and distribution system across Long Island and the Rockaways. During the course of these standard inspections Osprey nests are routinely discovered on electrical equipment. Our teams work quickly to create a plan to provide safe nesting locations during the off season, before the birds return to the area to nest. When ospreys build a nest on electrical equipment, it puts the nest in danger of catching fire, which can cause significant damage to the electrical system and outages to customers, as well has harm to the ospreys. In addition, the osprey are at high risk of electrocution, as their large wingspan can complete the circuit between closely spaced energized equipment or between an energized wire and a neutral ground wire.

Long Island Osprey Cams

PSEG Long Island has installed 24-hour webcams at two of the nests that were safely relocated by line workers. The Osprey Cam uses infrared technology to provide "night vision," so there is no light shining on the ospreys in the evening. The camera will help viewers understand all the complexities of nest building, breeding, and raising young ospreys. These raptors will need to cooperate to hatch their young, feed them as they grow, and protect them from the elements until they leave the nest. This is an opportunity for the whole world to witness the majesty and fragility of nature.

Osprey Task Force

Starting in 2019, PSEG Long Island and The Group for the East End enlisted the support of local environmental groups and other stakeholders to assist the company in implementing a strategy that would protect both the electrical infrastructure and wildlife such as the osprey. To act on this strategy, PSEG Long Island created an internal team and a specialized process to identify and evaluate osprey nest sites located on our infrastructure. The team, which spans multiple departments and areas of expertise, continues to make sure we act safely and responsibly to keep our feathered neighbors flying — and the electricity flowing. Here are what some of our partners are saying. 

“When you get that kind of community involvement like with PSEG Long Island everything works out better.”

- Jim Jones, Bayville Environmental Committee

“I think the partnership we formed is a really good one.”

- Aaron Virgin, Vice President, Group for the East End

“Very appreciative of your efforts in preserving wildlife; being an advocate for the natural wonders across Long Island.”

- Bob Denatale, Mayor of Bayville

How You Can Help

Help us to identify new locations or nests that may need attention. If you see an Osprey attempting to build on our utility structures and wires, please let us know. If you see something that needs attention please contact us. Our reps are available through email, live chat, Facebook and Twitter. Our crews will inspect the site and work with our experts and partners to come up with the best solution for the osprey while maintaining your best in class reliable electric service. 

For immediate emergencies, such as a nest on fire, call 911 and then us at 1-800-490-0075.