Not such a hot day today at the Loch of the Lowes today, with mist and cloud, though still warm- there is no doubt that this year’s comparatively settled weather is a boon to our birds as they raise their young without last year’s prolonged downpours and cold spells.
Our female osprey did not feel she needed to shade her chick as much today, and in fact spent many hours sitting on a dead tree perch to the left of the nest. We are not sure why she sat here so long, even refusing to return to the nest when the male arrived with a huge headless salmon at 10.45am. As there was no one around to ‘serve’ the fish, the chick didn’t get any, and this was also the case when the male ‘recycled’ the fish at 1pm. The female finally returned to the nest around 3.30pm and fed her chick, who after shouting for food all day, was still shouting as it ate!
At five and a half weeks old, this osprey chick is progressing rapidly, and it is amazing now to look at the other eggs in the nest and realise how much growth has been fueled in those short weeks by a high protein fish diet. You will also notice how much more assured the chick is now on its feet, spreading them flat and gripping so much more than even a few days ago. The wing stretching that is so important to develop flight muscles has started too- even though the wings are still comparatively short as they rather late.
An update on our Great Crested Grebe– it is doing well despite having a bite mark from a pike on its belly. The Grebe family has been seen on the loch today, all feeding together, so we think all will be well.