Sad osprey news at Flanders

Flanders Moss NNR

The remains of the nest in the spindly tree.

A recent check of the osprey nest at Flanders revealed a sad story. It appears the windy weather we have been having brought down a large part of the nest with the two nearly fledged youngsters inside. Unfortunately neither chick survived, which is a great shame as they were fully feathered and getting towards being ready to fledge.

The amazing osprey feet – huge claws ideal for grabbing slippery fish – such a shame these ones belong to one of the dead chicks were never put to use.

The tree that the ospreys have used for the last two years has been a very wobbly, dead pine and both years parts of the nest have collapsed. As there are plenty of other trees across the moss we will fell this tree during the winter so this sort of unfortunate accident can’t happen again.

An osprey nest is an amazing structure. It is only when it is on the ground can you see just how big it is and just how many sticks are used. Each one represents a collection and a journey. Interestingly in amongst the forest of twigs were some pieces of dead giant hogweed, an invasive non-native plant that is found along the River Forth nearby. These must have been picked off the ground but luckily the plant can’t spread from dead stems.

Dead giant hogweed stems in the nest.

The ospreys of the area have had a lot of interest this spring with Gordon Buchanan and the BBC Springwatch team filming at the Lake of Menteith just a couple of miles away. It is possible that the ospreys of this nest were some of those filmed during Springwatch at the lake. We know that the Flanders ospreys use the Lake where there is a handy trout fishery but also the River Forth and even the Forth estuary for feeding.

An adult was present in the area carrying a fish.

We will keep our fingers crossed that Flanders will host ospreys again next year, but next time with a much stronger tree.

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5 Responses to Sad osprey news at Flanders

  1. Valerie Webber says:

    That is so so sad , I am surprised as they had fledged they didnt survive , really awful news 😦

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Ladylanders says:

    So sad. Will the loss the of their young make the ospreys less likely to return to Flanders next year – will they seek out a new site elsewhere? I hope they do come back and raise a successful brood next year.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. gillywilly says:

    Oh golly; that’s so, so sad. I’m glad that the tree that this nest was in is going to be felled (in order to avoid the same thing happening to another nest being built here, presumably by the same adult pairing, I’m guessing), but also appreciate that nature is precarious; and it also strikes a balance in the food chain stakes.

    Nevertheless, all those watching this nest must be gutted.


  4. says:

    How sad . Nature happens unfortunately. Here’s to next year 💕


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