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Osprey chicks in a Boulder County nest on May 21, 2019.
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Fans of the Boulder County ospreys celebrated this weekend with the hatching of a third chick, but are in mourning today as another died this morning due to exposure.

The third osprey chick hatched on Saturday, just a few days after its siblings hatched on Thursday at the nest near the Boulder County Fairgrounds in Longmont.

But Nik Brockman, web administrator for Boulder County Parks and Open Space, said early this morning the first chick died after being exposed to the snow that fell on the nest overnight.

“The female had moved off to eat a fish, and chick No. 1 went toward her to get some food as well, and just never made it back into that nest bowl,” Brockman said. “Most likely it died of exposure due to the snow and cold.”

Brockman said this trio of chicks hatched earlier than in past years, and it just happened to coincide with some late-season snowfall.

“They’re vulnerable and only a few days old,” Brockman said. “It’s a little unusual to have snow this late in May and have temperatures in the mid 30s.”

Thankfully, Brockman said the other two chicks appear to be healthy.

“Other than the snow and chick No. 1, the chicks have been doing well,” Brockman said. “There have been lots of feedings, and they appear to be healthy.”

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