As this week has worn on we have all been gradually accepting that our odds of having a live hatching at the Loch of the Lowes osprey nest this year are now looking very poor indeed. Though we never say never ( this bird in particular has surprised us so many times!) there is realistically only a couple of days left for the last of the eggs to viably hatch.
Whilst this will be deeply disappointing for us all (and not least for the birds) we must put this in context- it will be only the second time in 24years this female has failed to breed successfully. She has reared 50 chicks on this nest to fledging and so no one can say she hasn’t been productive or a great parent!
We must look on the bright side and remember that this is also only over second ever opportunity to study what happens with these birds behaviour when the nest is unsuccessful. What will the female do? How long will she incubate before giving up? Will the male channel his instincts by building an frustration eyrie? ( You might think he is already showing signs of this today with some many sticks brought to the nest) Will they both remain with us all summer or migrate early? So many questions that only time will reveal.
As I write tonight, the male has again left eh eggs, wandering off into the dusk , and the female osprey is sitting a few trees away from the nest. However, she can’t see the nest from where she is sitting and perhaps doesn’t realise he’s not on the job- lets hope she returns soon.
To cheer us all up, a great photograph sent in by Mark Westgarth taken at Loch of the Lowes nest.
– thanks Mark!