Archives for April 2015

Ospreys in the snow

I’ve been monitoring ospreys this week and found by Friday that about three quarters of the pairs, in my main study area, had laid eggs and were incubating. It’s been good to see old friends back from Africa. Beatrice returned and chased away a young female which had taken over her nest. She allowed the new male to stay but almost immediately her old mate came back and drove him away. They’ve now been incubating for a week. In Strathspey, Blue XD and the old female Green J were building their nest when I checked on Tuesday and now they probably have eggs. The female at Red 8T’s eyrie was incubating early in the week but I didn’t see red 8T although from her behaviour I think he is also back. On Friday, I watched Morven on her new nest and close by was her mate from last year (now a six-year-old) and he was dealing with the front end of a very large flounder, he had caught in Findhorn Bay. Morven was giving him ever more querulous calls to hand it over. Back at her old nest the new young pair from last year, when they were non-breeders, are both back and building up the nest, although yesterday the female was being hassled by another male with a very nice trout. Today though has been completely different with snow falling all afternoon and about 3 inches at my home. As I write I can see a mistle thrush brooding a nest full of young in a tree below my window and she has kept them warm and dry all afternoon. I also found the time to go and have a look at Beatrice in the snow. Her nest wood was like a winter scene and her eyrie was completely covered in snow. Once I had my scope resting on the car window I could see the top of her head poking over the edge of the snowy nest. She had snuggled right down in the nest cup to keep her brood of eggs warm. I wonder how long she thought the snow would last? I checked the weather on my phone and knew that it was short lived and now as I update my blog the sun has come out and the snow is melting fast. I guess a typical spring day for ospreys in northern countries.

Beatrice's eyrie in the snow today

Beatrice’s eyrie in the snow today – top of head just showing top left

Morven returned again

Morven is back at last year’s nest with last year’s mate


Green J has been building up nest with Blue XD – had not laid eggs last Tuesday.  Will check tomorrow

Settled at usual nest

Blue XD has been building up the nest with Green J

Now incubating

Beatrice is now incubating eggs in her usual nest with last year’s mate

Cape Wrath and back to the Flows

Loyal remained mainly in the Knockfin Heights flows from north of Strathhelmsdale to Forsinaird but on 18th April flew west to Loch Naver and next day flew to Cape Wrath t 1pm and returned via Ben Hee 4pm, 7pm by Loch Choire.


April 1st to 22nd

April 1st to 22nd




Ranging very widely in Sutherland and Ross-shire

Hope ranged widely in 8000 km². She started at Ben Mor Assynt on 1st April and next day flew to Rhidorroch before going on 5th to Achnashellach. She then turned north to the Rubha Re Peninsula. On 11th April she flew past Poolewe and continued all the way to Kinbrace. On 12th to 16th April remained in this area with a trip north to Armadale and back. On 17th – 18th of April she made a long flight to the Cape Wrath Peninsula and then back to Kinlochbervie and the Reay estate.

April 1st - 22nd

April 1st – 22nd

Ranging widely in Sutherland and Ross-shire

Globe started the month at Kylesku and on 6th April flew south past Alladale to Carn Chuinneag. On 8th  April was north of Inchbae and then flew north to Carn Ban and on to Cnoc Damph. On 18th and 19th April was in Coigach and north to Assynt and Quinag and on 21st April was at Merkland

April 1st - 21st

April 1st – 21st

In the Elphin area

Suilven’s transmitter gave a couple of non GPS signals on 28th March from east of Elphin.  The transmitter is now old and not transmitting properly – it would be nice to think he may be on an eyrie.

Usual areas in NW Sutherland

Flew from Altnaharra  to the Gobernuisgach mountains on 6th – 8th April and then north to Loch Eriboll on the 13th and 14th April and by 18 April was n

March 29 - April 20th

March 29 – April 20th

orth of Kinlochbervie