Wildlife Blog 30th April 2011

Events from the nest today:

Our male and female ospreys have been continuing their incubation duties on the nest here at Loch of the Lowes. Our female and our male (7Y) have been taking it in turns to sit on the three eggs with our male continuing to bring nesting material to the nest. The two ospreys further adjust the nesting material during their incubation periods.

At 12.55pm 7Y brought a large headless fish and delivered it to our female who then flew off with it to eat elsewhere, leaving the male to incubate.

One of the questions we have recently received via ospreys@swt.org.uk asked how long eggs can be left unattended in the nest and still be viable. The answer to this varies greatly, depending on weather conditions. In very cold weather, we would be concerned for the eggs after about 20 minutes; however, it is worth noting that last year our male, 7Y, left the eggs unattended for 45 minutes and two of these still hatched later on. The main concern over unattended eggs during the incubation period is the threat of predation from crows and buzzards as the eggs lie undefended.

Other wildlife at Loch of the Lowes:

Key sightings out on the loch this morning included 5 great crested grebes, 3 mute swans along with two pairs of male and female goosander.

Elsewhere on the reserve, a tawny owl was again spotted early this morning. This nocturnal species is known to feed upon small mammals, and small birds, though more commonly eats mice, voles, and insects from the ground. The call of a male and female tawny owl together make the familiar ‘twit-twoo’, or more accurately ‘ke-wick’ and ‘hoo-hoo-ooo’. Hearing the two together, means there is likely to be a male giving a territorial response of ‘hoo-hoo-ooo’ to either a female or another male.

Also on the feeders, were three great spotted woodpeckers, three great tits, four coal tits, a blue tit, chaffinches, four greenfinches, two siskins and one yellowhammer.  Two red squirrels were seen entering the feed boxes, and a bank vole and a rabbit were also spotted. Elsewhere on the reserve were a redstart, and a pied wagtail.

Anna

Perthshire Reserves Seasonal Ranger

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Preface

Events from the nest today: Our male and female ospreys have been continuing their incubation duties on the nest here at Loch of the Lowes. Our female and our male …

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