Events from the nest:
There have been no Ospreys sighted at the nest all this week, but there have been several birds observed over the loch and surrounding area. One Osprey, possibly our resident male, was seen with a large fish on Wednesday morning flying to a pine tree opposite the viewing hides.
Thursday afternoon saw three Ospreys circling over Lowes; they seemed to be two juvenile birds and one adult, the youngsters high pitched alarm calls perhaps indicating that the adult was our male.
Research has shown that it is common for the female bird to leave the nesting area first, followed by the oldest chick, with the male leaving after the youngest chick. The juvenile dispersal range can fall between late August to late September. Listed below are the departure dates for the last bird to leave Loch of the Lowes for the last three four seasons.
2007: 26th August
2008: 22nd August
2009: 1st September
2010: 22nd August
As we are now approaching late August we can expect to see juvenile birds and solitary males from other nest sites appear over the loch.
Other wildlife at Lowes:
The feeding station at the visitor centre is still being well used by an array of small birds and the red squirrels, with the ever present mallard population picking up any scraps that fall from the feeders.
On and near the feeders this week we have seen blue tits, coal tits, great tits, greenfinch, chaffinch, siskins, great spotted woodpeckers, a treecreeper, robins, jays and two goldfinch enjoying the Niger seed on offer.
On the loch this week there have been mute swans, grey herons, canada geese, mallard ducks, tufted ducks, goosander and an increasing number of great crested grebes. This week we have seen four juvenile grebes swimming and feeding independently. Also seen was one very small chick still riding on a parent birds back.
Conservation work and sightings on the Perthshire reserves:
This week whilst working on the reserves we have seen devils bit and field scabious come into prominence, which along with the emergence of knapweed flowers give the meadows a lovely blue/purple look.
During our usual bracken and balsam control duties we have seen a good number of dragonflies, damselflies, frogs and toads.
In the surrounding countryside we have seen roe and fallow deer, several jays, several buzzards and a good number of red legged partridge.
The pine marten hair tubes are in position and being monitored for activity; the den boxes have been constructed by one of our residential volunteers and are ready to be positioned when data from the hair tubes has been analysed.
Perthshire Reserves Conservation Team