Our Ospreys continue to thrive despite the weather here seeming to alternate between winter and summer, even within the same day. Our male has been bringing in plenty of fish, though some of them have been a bit on the small side ( well tiny actually!) so perhaps he has finally learnt not to go for the really big Pike that got him into so much trouble earlier in the season.
The chick is really starting to get well feathered now and in particular its head is well covered and looks quite adult, though it’s colouring will be the typical juvenile speckled brown for some time yet, in contrast to the adults more solid chocolate and white feathering. It is also standing quite well on its own- well enough for us to see just how fat it is!
Elsewhere on the loch today there has been a lot of Great Crested Grebe politics, with the resident male on the Lilypad nest seeing off a newer pair who have been displaying on the loch today. We have also had good sightings today of willow and reed warblers as well as Goldfinches and Pike!
Last night we had a fascinating talk here at Loch of the Lowes by Tim Mackrill and the team from Rutland Ospreys, about their fascinating recent Osprey satellite tagging work and pilot education project inWest Africa. It was, as always, a pleasure to meet other people working with these remarkable birds, and to learn more about their approach and the special challenges their birds face at such a different site. Hearing about their work in Guinea has especially inspired us and has given us food for thought about what community engagement work we could do with communities in Africa when we find our where our birds travel to in the winter- which is of course where satellite tracking comes in.
There is still so much we don’t know about these birds, despite dedicated study here at Loch of the Lowes for over forty years. There is a whole part of their lives we lack detailed insight into and so much about their ecology, behaviour and conservation threats on migration that we still need to learn more about in order to better understand and protect them.
If you would like to find out more about the Rutland project, their website is: http://www.ospreys.org.uk/
If you would like to know more about satellite tracking and follow other tagged birds from the Highland Foundation for Wildlife ( whose expert Roy Dennis is the lead on our Satellite tagging project) go to : http://www.roydennis.org/