Well, it looks like our beloved female osprey has left for the long journey southwards on her autumn migration. She has not been seen on the nest or around the loch since mid yesterday and we are now fairly certain she has left for the year. When the wind dropped and backed around to a north easterly yesterday afternoon, she will have sensed a tail wind suitable to aid her journey southwards.
It seems like only a couple of weeks ago we were welcoming her back in spring, with the whole breeding season ahead of her. She arrived in fine form back on March 30th, to a great welcome for her 23rd year at this nest.She then kept us all waiting an extra week or so for egg laying, then surprised us with a truly remarkable four eggs. She displayed her usual tender and expert parental care and has raised this years chick Blue YZ to fledging as a healthy and very confident young bird who we hope will have every advantage for the journey ahead.
So far in her breeding ‘career’ this remarkable bird has laid 66 eggs and raised 50 chicks to fledging at this nest. She has taught us all so much about osprey behaviour and has surprised us more than a few times, not least when she became so very ill in 2010 and managed to pull through when all the experts had told us to expect the worst.
At her advanced age ( her late 20’s) we are all aware that every year she makes the migration back to Perthshire successfully may be her last. She is already so far past ‘normal’ life expectancy and there are so many hazards and so much luck involved in migration, we know the odds are now against her realistically . So we all fervently hope but don’t dare count on her returning next year to set yet another record for UK ospreys.
We all wish her and all the birds migrating from UK to southern wintering grounds luck, fair winds and safe journeys.