We arrived at 10 am to find there was no sight of the trees let alone the nest! The chicks were all visible on screen sporting their new rings and for 2 of them GSM transmitters.
At 10.30 the female landed and a fish had also appeared in the nest while we were setting up the equipment. We decided to put up just one scope in the hope of clearer conditions. Joanna called in to check that Sylvia and I were OK setting everything up and returned at lunchtime for much of the afternoon to help out.
Around 10.45 the female fed the chicks and they also took some fish on their own. By 11am it was beginning to rain and it was still raining at 12.30. At times large rain drops could be seen through the camera link and 2 chicks settled in for a wet day. Blue VT was still active, eating fish followed by stick moving and wing stretching before settling down almost out of camera shot. Visitors scurried out of the rain, the chicks sat looking wet, while we watched a flotilla of mallard sail by unperturbed – water off a duck’s back !!
In the early afternoon the clouds lifted and the rain stopped – for a while. Not only could we see the nest through the scopes, we saw wing flapping, adults visiting and between ourselves and a keen eyed visitor located the adults in the surrounding trees.
Despite visits to the nest from both the female and male no more fish had arrived by 4.30, when we left. VT had finished off the scraps of the morning fish by soon after 3pm.
The weather made things difficult but we still had 60 visitors. Many of them still had good sightings through the scopes and those who did not still had the live screens, even if at least one of the chicks appears to have become camera shy.
Worth particular mention were the children. One boy who had visited last year had asked to come again today for his 8th birthday – he had stickers and a book mark as a little birthday gift. Two other children, along with mum and dad persevered with the scopes and eventually saw the nests and chick movement. The young girl looked right through the file of photos and asked lots of questions. She went away very happy with 3 post cards, one for each Granny and one for herself, plus an Osprey Booklet to read later.
A good day – keen visitors, some good sightings and lots of lovely comments. A special thanks to Joanna for coming along to help out.
Margaret, Sylvia and Joanna
Editor’s comments and update
A big blush for the thanks. As Margaret said the visitors were keen and it’s always a pleasure to talk about ospreys.
Click on any of the images in the Report to enlarge them.
Shortly before 17.00 YA landed with a fresh catch and the youngsters were tucking in as Kielder Castle Cafe closed.