During the last few days 7H has virtually abandoned her scrubland roost areas near the river for the pylons further inland. She has now spent many hours on 11 different pylons although some are more favoured than others. And only a few minutes on others that must be sub-standard to an osprey!
She has roosted on a pylon each night since 28 October and 4 November was the first day that any fixes have shown her stationary in her old area. On 4 November she roosted on an old tree roost, but on 5 November it was back to Pylon City. Even the Resort pond has been almost ignored. The image below shows her pattern of a lot of time around pylons, a bit on the coast to the north and some on the river.
The beach visit was on 31 October. She almost certainly fished successfully on the river during the trip shown above, which was on the same day; here is a more detailed image.
She had flown at over 100m altitude from the pylon area dropping to half that as she approached the river. At the 13.48 GMT fix she was only 13m above the river when she turned and started heading towards the estuary. On the 13.51 fix she was at 9m altitude and may have made a catch about then because she gained height and flew inland, dropping onto a tree at 13.56. She was there for 20 minutes only which is about half the length of time she is stationary normally if she seems to have a fish, but that was the first time she had been near the river. She could have taken a part eaten fish back to the pylons, of course. Apart from that excursion there are few times since her move to the pylon area when her actions suggest that she has taken a fish although early visits to the river or sea can be missed because fixes then are about 40-50 minutes apart.
On 3 November she spent some time by the sea from 13.02 to 13.26 but went back inland without seeming to hunt. She arrived at the river at 15.32 and flew up and down for half an hour. Her altitude was mostly higher than when she is hunting but the fixes were approx 3 minutes apart so she may have succeeded near the end of her visit. On 4 November it is possible she made an early catch. For the first time in several days an early fix showed her on the river. At 07.37, an hour after sunrise, she was flying along it and by 08.12, the next fix, she was on one of her old roosts in the scrubland west of the river. During the rest of the morning she made more visits to the east side of the river than of late, so perhaps she is getting fed up with pylon life! That might not be a bad thing. There can be coastal fog which if it rolls inland could put her at risk of flying into the wires, especially as there are a LOT of pylons about. Here is a photo taken from the beach near where she has been recently and the striking pylons are visible in the background. The image below shows her activity from mid afternoon on 1 November until just after noon on 4 November.
On 5 November 7H spent an hour flying non-stop in a large circle inland a short way and then over the sea and up the coast. But it was back to the pylons by 14.50 and she roosted on one again. Yesterday she was flying along the river at soon after 08.00 but was back on a pylon until early afternoon when she headed off for……? The last fix came in at 15.01. She was further from Azemmour than she has travelled before and there is a tailwind for birds flying to West Africa. But she may just have been out for an afternoon jaunt. Time will tell. No e-mail yet today. There’ll be an update with anything exciting!
UV was stung into action by the comment in the last post that he scarcely moved more than 500m² in a day because that same day (30 October) he went to the coast and back and also flew around the reservoir more than the data normally suggests! He still didn’t cover many km though.
The most interesting aspect of his behaviour recently has been some overnight changes of roost. He has a new daytime roost point which he’s favoured since around 20 October and especially in the last week, although his interest is starting to wane! In the early hours of 31 October and again on 2 and 3 November he moved around 150m to the daytime roost area from the then usual overnight spot. There is no obvious reason, both sites are on the east side of slopes and the weather has been largely settled although it was wet and windy early and late this week. Then on 6/7 November he again made an early hours move between roosts, both of them trees he had roosted on overnight earlier in his stopover but less frequently of late.
On 4 and 5 November he was flying more often than of late; he was sufficiently active to generate fixes only a minute apart for a while! But he still didn’t go more than about 1 km from his roost areas. It was fairly cool at 14°C by recent standards on 4 November and quite wet. There are showers today, likely to continue over the weekend, but then the weather will pick up again.