Posts Tagged ‘Western Osprey’

Rutland Water

Today sees us leave Lincolnshire and head west into Rutland to visit Rutland Water, the premier site in England for Western Osprey. The Osprey became extinct as a breeding bird in the UK in 1916 (1840 in England but continued to breed in Scotland till 1916). Birds began to summer again in Scotland in 1954 (probably birds from Scandinavia) and the first breeding occurred in 1959. The Scottish population continued to expand over the following years. This was slow at first, but with the banning of oregano-chlorine pesticides the numbers began to climb and the Scottish population is now estimated at 250-300 pairs. It was then decided that there should be a re-introduction into England (at Rutland Water) and into west Wales using birds from Scotland transfered as young so as to imprint their new location on the birds in the hope that when they returned from Africa the following year they would relocate and breed at the new sites. This has been successful on both sites and Rutland now boasts around 8 breeding pairs plus some non- breeders. Other suitable relocation sites are being sought where the process can be repeated. We saw nest pylons when we were at Arne in Dorset, one of the new reintroduction sites, earlier in the year.

An Osprey nest at Lyndon

Our first stop then was the south side of the water, where a pair of Ospreys use a nest platform in front of 2 hides. This is one of the longest established nesting sites and allows public viewing without disturbing the birds. Along the walk to and from the hide a number of Blackcap, Chiffchaff and Common Whitethroat were singing and we got an excellent view of a male Yellowhammer, although he flew once I pointed the camera at him.

The male Osprey from the Lyndon pair
The female Osprey at Lyndon on the nest (photo of televised feed into visitors centre)

Once we had seen the Ospreys, we moved over to look at the complex of pools on the west side of the water which provide a lot of different habitats and give a good variety of birds. Here there were good numbers of various ducks and some Common Terns, the first I had seen this year.

On the way back to our cottage, we saw a falcon sitting on a telegraph pole. We thought it was probably a Kestrel, but as we drove nearer it flew and we could see it was a Eurasian Hobby.

Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Greylag Goose [sp] (Anser anser)
Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Egyptian Goose (Alopochen aegyptiaca)
Common Shelduck (Tadorna tadorna)
Gadwall [sp] (Mareca strepera)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Common Pochard (Aythya ferina)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
Great Crested Grebe [sp] (Podiceps cristatus)
Grey Heron [sp] (Ardea cinerea)
Great Cormorant [sp] (Phalacrocorax carbo)
Western Osprey [sp] (Pandion haliaetus)
Red Kite [sp] (Milvus milvus)
Common Moorhen [sp] (Gallinula chloropus)
Eurasian Coot [sp] (Fulica atra)
Eurasian Oystercatcher [sp] (Haematopus ostralegus)
Northern Lapwing (Vanellus vanellus)
Black-tailed Godwit [sp] (Limosa limosa)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
European Herring Gull [sp] (Larus argentatus)
Lesser Black-backed Gull [sp] (Larus fuscus)
Common Tern [sp] (Sterna hirundo)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Eurasian Collared Dove [sp] (Streptopelia decaocto)
Common Swift [sp] (Apus apus)
Great Spotted Woodpecker [sp] (Dendrocopos major)
European Green Woodpecker [sp] (Picus viridis)
Eurasian Hobby [sp] (Falco subbuteo)
Eurasian Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)
Western Jackdaw [sp] (Coloeus monedula)
Rook [sp] (Corvus frugilegus)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
Eurasian Blue Tit [sp] (Cyanistes caeruleus)
Great Tit [sp] (Parus major)
Sand Martin [sp] (Riparia riparia)
Barn Swallow [sp] (Hirundo rustica)
Common House Martin [sp] (Delichon urbicum)
Cetti’s Warbler [sp] (Cettia cetti)
Common Chiffchaff [sp] (Phylloscopus collybita)
Sedge Warbler (Acrocephalus schoenobaenus)
Eurasian Reed Warbler [sp] (Acrocephalus scirpaceus)
Eurasian Blackcap [sp] (Sylvia atricapilla)
Common Whitethroat [sp] (Sylvia communis)
Eurasian Wren [sp] (Troglodytes troglodytes)
Common Starling [sp] (Sturnus vulgaris)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
European Robin [sp] (Erithacus rubecula)
House Sparrow [sp] (Passer domesticus)
Dunnock [sp] (Prunella modularis)
White Wagtail (Pied) (Motacilla alba yarrellii)
Common Chaffinch [sp] (Fringilla coelebs)
European Greenfinch [sp] (Chloris chloris)
European Goldfinch [sp] (Carduelis carduelis)
Yellowhammer [sp] (Emberiza citrinella)
Common Reed Bunting [sp] (Emberiza schoeniclus)

Day 2 of my trip to West Wales and before we left the hotel we were treated to watching a stand-off between two Nuthatches in the garden. They stood absolutely still for about 5 minutes before one flew at the other and drove it off.

Nuthatches

Our travels started off on the Pendam Mountain Rd, where we had excellent views of Tree Pipit and Stonechat.

Stonechat

The rain started to fall and so we decided to make our way to the Dyfi Osprey Project site. From the hide, we had excellent views of the two nesting Ospreys.

Male Osprey

Osprey nest

 

 

 

 

 

Elsewhere on the reserve, we had good views of Cuckoo, Lesser Redpoll and Siskin along with hearing Reed and Sedge Warblers singing from the reed-beds.

Cuckoo

Lesser Redpoll

Wren

Siskin (m)

Our next stop was Glandyfi, a viewpoint looking over the Dyfi Estuary. Here we added Goosander to the species seen along with Cormorant and a number of Little Egrets.

View over Dyfi estuary

Our final visit was to a hill at the rear of the RSPB reserve at Ynys Hyr where we had again excellent views of Cuckoo but although we could hear a singing Whinchat we were unable to locate the bird. Buzzards circled overhead and as we prepared to leave a Grey Heron flew down the valley.

Common Pheasant [sp] (Phasianus colchicus)
Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Common Shelduck (Tadorna tadorna)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
Common Merganser [sp] (Mergus merganser)
Grey Heron [sp] (Ardea cinerea)
Little Egret [sp] (Egretta garzetta)
Great Cormorant [sp] (Phalacrocorax carbo)
Western Osprey [sp] (Pandion haliaetus)
Red Kite [sp] (Milvus milvus)
Common Buzzard [sp] (Buteo buteo)
Eurasian Oystercatcher [sp] (Haematopus ostralegus)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Common Cuckoo [sp] (Cuculus canorus)
Eurasian Jay [sp] (Garrulus glandarius)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
Great Tit [sp] (Parus major)
Barn Swallow [sp] (Hirundo rustica)
Willow Warbler [sp] (Phylloscopus trochilus)
Common Chiffchaff [sp] (Phylloscopus collybita)
Sedge Warbler (Acrocephalus schoenobaenus)
Eurasian Reed Warbler [sp] (Acrocephalus scirpaceus)
Eurasian Blackcap [sp] (Sylvia atricapilla)
Eurasian Wren [sp] (Troglodytes troglodytes)
Eurasian Nuthatch [sp] (Sitta europaea)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
Song Thrush [sp] (Turdus philomelos)
Mistle Thrush [sp] (Turdus viscivorus)
European Robin [sp] (Erithacus rubecula)
European Stonechat [sp] (Saxicola rubicola)
Dunnock [sp] (Prunella modularis)

Pied Wagtail [sp] (Motacilla alba)
Meadow Pipit [sp] (Anthus pratensis)
Tree Pipit [sp] (Anthus trivialis)
Common Chaffinch [sp] (Fringilla coelebs)
European Greenfinch [sp] (Carduelis chloris)
Eurasian Siskin (Carduelis spinus)
European Goldfinch [sp] (Carduelis carduelis)
Common Redpoll [sp] (Carduelis flammea)
Common Reed Bunting [sp] (Emberiza schoeniclus)

Osprey nest

Some more photos from our excellent trip to Rutland water last weekend

Osprey

Osprey in flight (Keith)

Orange Tip

Rutland Water

Sedge Warbler

Treecreeper (Keith)

Rutland Water

A bright Saturday morning saw Sue, Keith and me on the 120-mile journey from home to Rutland Water nature reserve in the East Midlands. Rutland water was the first nesting site for Western Osprey in England and is still the most southerly of the few known sites.

Rutland Water

Sue dropped us at the reserve and went off to do a couple of visits to nearby craft shops, whilst Keith and I set out to see the target species for the day – Western Osprey and Tree Sparrow. The latter proved to be no problem as 3 Handsome male birds sat on the feeders outside the visitors centre.

Tree Sparrow

 

From here we made our way towards Manton Bay, where one pair of Ospreys were nesting. In front of one hide we had excellent views of Sedge Warbler as it displayed and sang hoping to attract a mate.

Sedge Warbler

The Osprey nest was clearly visible on its platform and the female bird, incubating 4 eggs, could just be made out. The male returned to the nest 3 times, although he didn’t bring any food and eventually decide to perch in a tree before he headed off again.

Osprey nest

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Male Osprey perched in tree

No, we didn’t climb up to the nest for this one – taken from the CCTV camera feed observing the nest

 

 

 

 

 

 

On the way back from Manton Bay we were fortunate to get another excellent view of a warbler – this time Willow warbler as it sang from its perch on a wire – they are not normally so obliging.

Willow Warbler

Eurasian Coot

Great Cormorant

Target species were seen but what would the rest of the visit bring – Part 2 of our trip to follow tomorrow.