2 July: Osprey Watch Report
Around 80 people braved the downpours, a mix of day visitors and people who were staying in Bellingham, Stannersburn and Kielder. Some had been at Kielder Observatory the previous evening and had seen Saturn during breaks in the cloud. We also had a visit from two very keen osprey watchers who had just finished a 2 week stint as volunteers at Loch Garten. We had people from Stansted and another couple from near Oxford who had Red Kite visiting their garden in large numbers. One little boy was very keen to find out more about osprey as he was in Osprey House at school. Another visitor was a teacher who went away inspired and already planning how she could include work on osprey into her lessons and whether a visit might be possible for her class.
The birds had an equally wet day, raining hard at Nest 1A while it was fine at Leaplish and then fine with them while we suffered the next belt of rain. Just before 12.30 it was pouring with rain and no visitors so Paul and Les decided to eat their lunches, while watching Blue Y3 who dragged a scraggy tail end of fish out from under the twigs and moss. She tried, owl fashion, to swallow it whole but eventually gave up. Y0 also tried, followed by Y1 who had more success holding the fish in his talons and tearing off scraps.
In the end Mrs YA downed it in one go leaving them with nothing to eat until around 3.40 when YA delivered a large fish, straight on top of the chicks.
By the time we left at 5 pm (by then it was sunny and warm!) we think all the chicks had eaten and Mrs YA was still in the process of feeding them.
One couple with keen eyesight and good binoculars spotted an intruder around the nest at about 4.30 which was duly chased off by one of the adults. One of the adults has also taken to sitting in a tree some 2 poles length to the right of the nest. We also saw 4 pied wagtail, a few rabbits and a wren but hardly any midges!
Margaret, Les and Paul
The 15.37 delivery fed the chicks and Mrs YA for over 1.5 hours. YA is managing to catch fish even when there are some intense rain showers. Although with the size of Kielder Water one area could well be dry whilst another is damp. Mrs YA usually waits for a break in the weather before feeding the brood but sometimes needs must!
The young ospreys are ever more adventurous with their wing exercises.
Y1 is the most active chick, Y2 and Y3 tie for bottom! Although Y2 is increasing his workrate.
This video shows a few of their sessions.