Staff and volunteers at Loch of the Lowes Visitor Centre and Wildlife Reserve in Perthshire are eagerly awaiting the return of ospreys this month.
In 2017 male osprey LM12 touched down at Loch of the Lowes on 16 March, the earliest appearance of a resident bird since 1969. His mate LF15 arrived at the reserve a few days later on 23 March.
LM12 and LF15 have been breeding since 2015, successfully hatching eight chicks.
Rachael Hunter, the Trust’s Perthshire Ranger, said: “Ospreys typically arrive at Loch of the Lowes in late March but the first bird could appear on the nest any day now. We’ve been busy preparing for their arrival by recruiting the team of dedicated volunteers and Species Protection Officers who will help carry out the 24 hour Osprey Watch that is in place once an egg is laid.
“Until they arrive we won’t know if our resident pair LM12 and LF15 will breed for a fourth season, but thanks to the support we receive from players of People’s Postcode Lottery the nest will be well protected from disturbance.
Sanjay Singh, Senior Programmes Manager, People’s Postcode Lottery said: “Seeing ospreys return to Scotland is always a sign that spring has truly sprung, and our players will be hoping for another successful season for these iconic birds of prey at Loch of the Lowes.”
Loch of the Lowes Visitor Centre is open daily from 10am – 5pm with 24-hour access to the reserve hides. The Trust’s live osprey webcam ensures people from around the world can follow events as they happen.
Ospreys were extinct in Britain for much of the 20th century. They began to recover in the 1960s and around 260 pairs of ospreys now breed in the UK each summer.
Our Osprey Protection Programme at Loch of the Lowes is supported by players of People’s Postcode Lottery.