Osprey Watch 14 June 2014 (Nest 1)
In keeping with the football theme it was definitely a day of two halves! The morning’s weather was not good with a lot of rain, Mrs YA a bit neglectful of the chicks and the unwelcome visitors. (Explanation later!) The afternoon was fine and sunny, Mrs YA was an exemplary Mum and our very welcome visitors arrived.
Joyce, Dave and Ian were all raring to go well before opening time at 11.00 but as the rain was persistent we decided to keep indoors watching the live streaming. This allowed us to view Mrs YA leaving the 3 chicks in a huddle uncovered in the elements for a bit too long for our liking. She must have known opening time was 11.00 as at that moment she started feeding them with a fish that was already on the nest….Well actually Mrs YA we caught you out, because unbeknown to you, we were watching you well before then!!! Despite this the chicks do look well and healthy and are growing exponentially.
Two of the chicks have quite dark head markings – perhaps taking them from Mum – but one is amazingly quite white looking. There seems to be a bit of bullying going on, as mentioned before by Joanna, even at this early age (sibling rivalry?) which makes for a bit of laughter as ’head butting’ seems to be the fighting method used.
Feeding seems to take place at about 45 minute intervals but not so much ‘ little and often’ as ‘lottle and often’!
By 12.55 the chicks were well sated and dozed off whilst Mum preened herself.
At 13.25 Mum flew off. At this point the live streaming also went off and after we got it on again I let out a gasp as the chicks seemed to have disappeared and been replaced by a large piece of moss!! Thankfully we realised all was well when 3 little bobbleheads appeared from it! Not sure how it got there but Mum eventually got rid of it to the other side of the nest.
Absent Dad was seen at this time on the tree to the left of the nest.
At 14.40 YA arrived with a live fish so Mrs YA immediately took it from him and ensured it was not a live fish for long by feeding it to the chicks. 20 minutes later there were 3 fat chicks bravely roaming round the nest but they soon settled back under Mum to keep warm.
Dad arrived at 15.40 to polish off the fish as he had not had the head earlier so he must have been hungry – but Mrs YA took the fish off him and walked around the nest with it then fed more to the chicks. When we packed up at 16.30 Mrs YA and 3 chicks were looking very happy and contented and safe and we guess YA had gone fishing for his supper!
The unwelcome visitors amounted to a few hundred (midges!) and the very welcome visitors amounted to 105 which was very good considering the morning was a wash out.
Many of the visitors said they would return tomorrow as Osprey Watch is on again Sunday 15th June, Father’s Day. A nice day out for Dad, folks, with a good meal at the Boat Inn???
Joyce, Ian and Dave
Thanks to the team for an interesting report.
The moss arrived courtesy of YA, who must have decided extra protection was needed!
As noted in the Report two chicks have darkened significantly overnight; in the image above the likeness to Mrs YA is noticeable. But it is the second down growth which is why the chick born a day later is still much paler. It will be interesting to see if any of the chicks do resemble the exceptionally dark Mrs YA when they have feathers.