It’s an exciting time here at Loch of the Lowes, and a real relief to have witnessed all three of our osprey chicks fledging successfully. After its maiden flight on Sunday, FR4 decided to spend most of Monday tucked up on the nest, trying to shelter from the intermittent rain showers. Its siblings however were confident enough to fly further afield in search of cover, perching under the canopy of nearby trees. Since fitting our chicks with satellite transmitters 3 weeks ago, I am now able to share with you the initial movements of FR3, our first chick to fledge on the 12th July. As expected, apart from the odd adventurous short flight it has spent most of its time perched close to the nest, keeping a keen eye out for dad returning with a fish. All of the fledglings are still returning to the eyrie for feeding, but we will soon expect to see them choose their own favourite feeding spot close by.
Visitors have witnessed our male taking spectacular plunges into the loch whilst fishing, appearing to show the youngsters how it’s done. One chick seems to be a very quick learner, as one of our volunteers captured a very special moment as it took its first fishing attempt in full view of the hide. Our female should be with us for another few weeks, preparing herself for her autumn migration. Our male however will stay in charge of the youngsters, providing food and protection until they are strong enough to migrate at about 12 weeks of age. In the meantime we look forward to watching them practice their flying skills and tracking their movements as they go!