Notes from the nightwatch team
What an exciting week it’s been, watching our Osprey pairs’ first chick of the season emerge into the world then grow so rapidly in just a few days on a diet of Perthshire’s finest Trout and Pike.
As was mentioned in a previous post, we will be continuing nightwatch while there are still two eggs to guard and the opportunity is there to capture the moment the first chips from another chick appear on an egg shell.
The female continues to diligently turn the eggs throughout the night, but now seems to do so with a bit of extra care for the precious bundle underneath her. The eggs and chick are only left uncovered for very brief spells when ‘mum’ has a toilet break and wing stretch at the nest edge or sometimes flies a quick circle round the tree before returning to the nest cup.
The hot weather this week has given us some quite balmy nights and one unexpected downpour on Wednesday, the entry in the Osprey diary read….3.10 am ‘light rain’, then ‘heavy downpour’ and ‘rain stopped’ by 3.20 am, the incubating female took it all in her stride as usual and didn’t flinch once.
The male also is proving to be a good provider and has regularly been turning up around first light with an intact fish for his partner and chick to share; seeing mums fearsome talons grip the fish, then watch as her perfectly designed beak rips off the smallest of pieces for the gapping mouthed youngster is a heart warming sight first thing in the morning.
Some of the other wildlife spotted or heard on ‘nights’ this week have included Woodcock, Snipe, Tawny Owls, Oystercatchers, Roe deer and one Hedgehog!
We haven’t been lucky enough to see an Otter again but have heard some ‘splashes’ from the water, given that river Otters can be both diurnal and nocturnal we like to think there may be one very close to us but just not visible.
Species Protection Officer