There were some strong winds at Kielder on Sunday and heavy showers at times. Both nests rocked and the tree holding the ‘long shot’ camera was obviously swaying some distance.
Maybe the wind was the reason YA changed from his favoured ‘pole position’ to mating on the nest. And it was easy to see the female was receptive, so successful couplings. Here is a link to a post last year going into quite a bit of detail on the process of mating and egg formation. In summary, for successful copulation the female must raise her tail to let the male wrap his tail underneath so a ‘cloacal kiss’ takes place, transferring the sperm.
YA brought in a large stick and, later, a fish for Mrs YA Edit: the female who arrived on 26/3, not the 2013 female who returned on 8/4. He did a bit of nestorising. Things seem to be going smoothly for the Nest 1 pair.
Over at Nest 2 – an even more exposed site than Nest 1 – only 37 was seen on the nest. No surprise that he moved moss out of the cup and dug further down!
The screenshots below show successful mating. And there is one of Mrs YA claiming the fish YA had dropped off for her.