On 3 October UV set out for the mainland. He didn’t stop at his usual wetland area about 7 km inland which he had visited the previous two days but travelled almost 50 km further to the Lampsar River. He roosted in that area and on 4 October returned to the Langue de Barbarie via the coast. Here is an animation created by Paul.
On 3 September the first fix over the mainland was at 09.26 UTC and by noon UV was by the paddies by the Lampsar. He wasn’t over 100m altitude ASL most of the way nor was he flying fast. He spent the next six hours in the paddies before moving SW to roost.
On 4 October UV left the roost area shortly before 11.00 and headed WNW to the coast, arriving at a point about 17 km north of Saint Louis via some stops either side of the Senegal River which is also the border between Senegal and Mauritania. As on the previous day he wasn’t flying high or fast. The only sustained travel over 200m ASL was for 15 minutes or so as he approached the Mauritanian coast. From soon after 14.00 until almost 17.00 he explored an area not unlike the Langue de Barbarie right on the Mauritania/Senegal border.
UV arrived back on the Langue before 18.30 and roosted as normal in one of his favourite spots in the mangroves by the beach. He had covered 172 km in his excursion.
In the September summary we found no evidence that incoming migratory birds – especially dominant female ospreys – returning to their wintering grounds had disturbed UV’s routines. Was UV ‘encouraged’ to leave the Langue by one or more experienced ospreys? There is no real evidence to suggest that is the case. The weather on 3 October was good for flying with only light winds and high hazy cloud. The day before his behaviour was routine although he could have been airborne a bit more than usual.
Apart from the length in both time and distance UV’s trip was very like his almost daily jaunts to the mainland for an hour or so. Whatever the reason for his longer excursion UV has returned to the Langue for now at least. We will be watching the next few days with keen interest.