Ospreys-Mid-Wales

Posted on July 12, 2015 · Posted in News

In my last blog on the Mid-Wales ospreys at Llyn Clywedog I mentioned that the chicks were expected to hatch around the end of May. I visited the hide again on May 31st. A ranger from Natural Resources Wales said the behaviour of the adult birds suggested the first egg may have hatched that morning, but without a sighting of the chick it was impossible to be sure.

After a busy few days I visited the hide again on 10th June with two of our Bron y Llys B&B guests. I took a telescope with me and we had great views of the nest. I suspected three chicks but I never saw more than two raised heads at a time so couldn’t be sure, and there was no NRW ranger on hand to confirm it. Three is the normal number of eggs for ospreys, and this pair produced three last year but only two hatched. At the end of the season the third egg was removed from the nest for testing to find out why it hadn’t hatched, but the results aren’t known yet.

On Saturday morning (20th) I returned to the hide with another B&B guest and this time there was no doubt about it: there are three chicks! When we arrived the female was on the nest but she was soon on the wing, seeing off a buzzard which had unwisely invaded osprey air space. She had just returned to the nest when the male came into view carrying a fish. Having placed it in the nest he moved to one side and started preening while his mate fed the chicks. My guest and I both had telescopes and agreed we could see three young heads begging for food. After feeding her family the female took off and headed south along the reservoir.

At the Dyfi Osprey Project, which I’d visited the previous day, there are also three chicks. There the nest is constantly on camera and the eggs are known to have hatched at two-day intervals, from 29th May to 2nd June, so the two broods are roughly in step. It’s good to know that, all being well, there will be six new Mid-Wales ospreys this year.