Isn’t it amazing how much our wee Osprey chick is already changing and growing? On its fourth day, the wee one is already noticeably bigger than its sibling eggs, and its feathers seem to cover it a little better, giving it a darker appearance. Most noticeably its coordination has improved very fast, and it no longer struggles so much to reach up for food – it is now feeding very strongly, and there is certainly nothing wrong with its appetite!
The male Osprey has brought in four fish so far today and the last very large Pike has been back to the nest at least three times now: the male kept recycling it, taking it away to feed on it himself, bringing it back for the female to take to fed the chick again, then the male stealing it again and flying off with it. It finally came back about 7.15pm, and was reduced to a tiny tail which promptly got stuck on our female’s foot for a while!
Of course we are all wondering about the second and third eggs- it is day 38 for egg two today, and only day 34 for the third, so there is plenty of time yet in the normal range for hatching.
In other wildlife news, we have had some really good bird sightings on the reserve this week such as: Pied Flycatchers have been seen in our woods as well as the more common Spotted Flycatchers. A pair of wonderful Redstarts have been spotted using one of our nest boxes which is a first for the reserve – the nest box was built by students from Strathallan School last autumn so it’s nice to report such unusual residents!
Elsewhere on the hatching front, our local Canada geese now have goslings on the loch and there are baby Robins around the centre loudly shouting for food almost constantly, having fledged, but still dependant on their parents. The warm weather has also brought a huge upturn in the number of Bats flying in the evenings and a huge hatching of Damselflies and Mayflies on the loch- and subsequently the birds which feed on them such as Swallows, Martins and Swifts.
Lastly, just we thank you to everyone who has called, emailed and written to the team here at Loch of the Lowes recently regarding our Osprey hatching- it is wonderful to know so many of you share our excitement and joy for the birds, and we really appreciate all your kind words about the work we do here protecting and promoting these birds and their conservation- a heartfelt thank you for your support. More Osprey Q and A’s tomorrow folks.