Migration news

It was a miserable wet day and I was down at Findhorn Bay in the afternoon. Two ospreys perched on the usual saltmarsh posts but neither seemed to have a transmitter, later I checked the satellite tracking data and found that Talisman had been perched just out of my sight further to the east, but had moved to the main saltmarsh after I had left. It was just a poor day for seeing birds; the waders being pushed up into the salt marshes because of the high tide and I didn’t see the Avocet, which had been there over the weekend – a rare bird this far north.

This evening as the data came in I could see that the young osprey Spey had been delayed by equally bad weather in Yorkshire, but what really surprised me was that yesterday afternoon, a nice sunny breezy day when we were on the coast, Nimrod had set off late in the afternoon on his migration to Africa and he had headed away to the east and then out from the Aberdeenshire coast over the North Sea and an incredible loop which finally brought him ashore on the north Norfolk coast during the night. He also found today’s weather not good form migrating and just managed to wind his way down into Suffolk. Morven also set off yesterday from Caithness, unfortunately I don’t know which track she took because her radio transmitter has been malfunctioning for a long time, but this afternoon I got signals showing that she was near Arbroath in Angus. The only tracked ospreys still to go is Talisman. The end of another summer of ospreys – I hope they all have another successful migration and I see them back next spring.

Talking about migrating ospreys, my friend Daniel Schmidt from Germany sent me a photograph and an email this afternoon asking about a colour ringed osprey seen at Lake Klingnau in north Switzerland. Later Hans Schmidt of the Swiss Ornithological Institute sent the details – it had been photographed on 26th of August by Martin Trachsel. The exciting thing was that the bird, wearing a white/black 94 colour ring, was one of the youngsters ringed at the North Wales osprey nest this summer. It’s the first recovery of a British osprey in Switzerland. There’s always something new in the osprey world.

Martin Trachsel's photo of Osprey 94