Resident male osprey LM12 has made his earliest arrival on record at the Scottish Wildlife Trust’s Loch of the Lowes Wildlife Reserve near Dunkeld.
LM12 was spotted at around 12pm yesterday (Sunday 13 March), marking the start of his eleventh breeding season at the reserve. This is two days earlier than LM12’s previous record, which was set in 2019 when he arrived back on 15 March.
Staff and volunteers at the reserve, as well as a global audience of webcam watchers, are now eagerly watching for the return of LM12’s mate, the female osprey NC0. The pair successfully fledged three chicks in their first two seasons together (in 2020 and 2021).
The Trust’s Perthshire Ranger Sara Rasmussen said: “LM12’s arrival back in Perthshire has kickstarted the season at Loch of the Lowes. We’re very hopeful of seeing his mate NC0 return by the end of the month.
“It’s an exciting time for everyone here following weeks of preparation to ensure that the nest is ready for the birds’ return and that our live webcam is ready to share another exciting season with the world.”
Laura Chow, Head of Charities, People’s Postcode Lottery said: “It’s always exciting to hear that the osprey season has started at Loch of the Lowes. The Scottish Wildlife Trust’s work on the Osprey Protection Programme, which safeguards ospreys at the reserve, is so valuable. Watching through the webcam gives people all around the world the chance to learn more about these incredible birds.”
Loch of the Lowes Visitor Centre is currently open seven days a week from 10:30am to 5pm. The Scottish Wildlife 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 an estimated 300 pairs of ospreys now breed in the UK each summer. Most of these birds migrate to West Africa but some winter in Spain and Portugal.
The recovery of ospreys is thanks to the efforts of conservation charities including the Scottish Wildlife Trust. The Osprey Protection Programme at Loch of the Lowes Visitor Centre & Wildlife Reserve is supported by players of People’s Postcode Lottery.