Yesterday during an amble across the moss (near the lab tea for those who have had the pleasure of extracting it), I was startled by a familiar alarm call.
Overhead was an osprey, winging around making the typical call when someone unwanted is near a nest, the equivalent of saying to the youngsters, “keep your head down!”.
Shortly thereafter it was joined by its mate – clearly I had interrupted a meal delivery.
Within a few minutes I had spotted the nest sitting on top of a Scots pine, and once I had retreated to a sensible distance, the fish was delivered to the nest and the female started feeding her young.
As a footnote, I passed an old nest, damaged but still substantial in April, now all gone.
So although it could be a new pair, it seems more than likely that the osprey pair that nested on the western edge of Flanders and abandoned their storm-damaged nest in April have simply relocated half a mile further east, probably recycling their nest material in the process. We saw this behaviour in a magpie pair close to us that spent a month dismantling an old nest and rebuilding it not far away.
So, not so handy for the armchair viewing, but good news nonetheless.
Obviously the rebuild will have put them behind schedule – the offspring of other Ospreys elsewhere are close to fledging. At Manton Bay in Rutland a pair have raised four chicks, now pretty much fully grown, so you can see six large ospreys in a single nest at times on the webcam!