Empty Nest Syndrome
Here at Lowes we are all starting to suffer from empty nest syndrome, with all our ospreys having left on their autumn migrations. There are still occasionally ospreys being seen nearby, mostly birds passing through on their way south using nearby Lochs as ‘lunch breaks’.
The nest here, high on a Scots pine on our Loch shore, now looks rather forlorn, with its wide bowl of sticks now looking rather dishevelled. During the breeding season so much care is lavished on it by our ospreys – a constant tidying of sticks by mum and refreshing of the bedding material by dad- that it seems odd to have it untidy! The soft lining consists of grass, moss and dried pond weed, which accounts for the nice crop of greenery now sprouting on it.
The nest is in fact a huge structure- about six foot in diameter , built by our ospreys over many years, but is secured on a metal base put up by staff here at the reserve many years ago to provide stability. This should ensure it will survive the winter storms and snows weight, and next spring our ospreys will only have to do their usual renovations and stick additions to make it ready for another breeding season.
Ospreys are legendarily site faithful and even if a nest is blown down, they will usually rebuild on the same place. The prefer sites with excellent visibility and have been shown to readily take up artificial nesting platforms- effectively starter kit homes! During the autumn and winter is the time that conservation groups, rangers and enthusiasts all over the UK will be looking to erecting more of these to attract more young ospreys to take up residence in new areas- helping them re-colonise more of their former historic range and help the species recover.
1pm Update: the camera are back!!! We’ve had line engineers here all morning and the great news is that our cameras are back on line! Let’s hope it stays that way!