Wildlife Blog 21st April 2011

Events from the nest today:

Throughout the day so far, our male and female ospreys have been making regular changes in incubation duties of the three eggs laid on the 13th 16th and 19th of April.  61 eggs laid in one lifetime is a remarkable achievement for our female, and all that experience is certainly coming in to use again this season.  Incubation seems to be going well with both ospreys regularly turning the eggs.

If you’re interested in viewing footage of our female osprey returning to the nest and swapping incubation duties with our male, 7Y, follow the link to our youtube clip: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QcsGi9hn2sc

7Y is continuing to perform his duties as a provider and brought half a fish to our female this morning at around 6am, which our female proceeded to eat.

Early this afternoon a buzzard could be seen overhead, along with warning cries heard from our male who was incubating at the time. However, the buzzard soon left the vicinity.

Late into the afternoon 7Y could be seen bringing more twigs to the nest, further evidence of how particular ospreys can be over their nests.

A question we received via ospreys@swt.org.uk asked how many breeding pairs of ospreys we know about in Scotland. Currently it is estimated that there are over 200 breeding pairs. We can all see the impact our female osprey has had on this amount by successfully raising 48 chicks so far – a truly fantastic achievement! Ospreys are recovering well in Scotland, but are still rare and as such are on the amber list of UK birds of conservation concern. They also have the highest degree of legal protection under Schedule 1 of the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, making it an offense to intentionally take, injure or kill an osprey, its nest, eggs, or young. It is also an offence to intentionally or recklessly disturb birds during the breeding season. A hefty fine can ensue of up to £5,000 if the law is violated. Our 24 hour osprey watch aims to provide our resident breeding pair with protection from egg thieves as well as any unintentionally reckless behaviour which may disturb the pair during this breeding season.

Other wildlife at Loch of the Lowes:

This morning, at 8.50am a reed bunting could be seen in front of hide. This sparrow sized bird can be found in wet vegetation and males often perch on top of reeds to sing, as was the case this morning here at Loch of the Lowes. Reed buntings are on the amber list of UK birds of conservation concern. An interesting fact about this bird is that over half of the chicks in a nest are thought not to be fathered by the female’s mate!

Elsewhere on the loch were great crested grebes, mute swans, around 20 tufted duck and 2 oystercatchers.

A great spotted woodpecker visited the feeders today, along with a pied wagtail, a dunnock, a robin, great tits, coal tits, blue tits, greenfinches, siskins, and two yellowhammers.

Anna

Perthshire Reserves Seasonal Ranger

Preface

Events from the nest today: Throughout the day so far, our male and female ospreys have been making regular changes in incubation duties of the three eggs laid on the …

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