Blizzard here today

Just as we were hearing of the first ospreys in southern England, and the song thrushes were back here singing, it’s all change again with a snow blizzard all day. Wet snow and causing damage to trees, and our electricity was off most of the day. Checked all the birds today, and most of the ospreys still waiting to migrate, although Beatrice is at her stop-over at L’Adour in southern France and may be Morven is on her way. Sadly her transmitter is faulty and I haven’t had any transmissions recently, but the radio has worked better when she is migrating so here’s hoping. Otherwise I hope to see her at her nest in April, and will Talisman come back (or did he die in December).

The earthquake and tsunami in Japan have been really shocking, and I’m sure everyone feels for the poor people on that coast. I’ve emailed some of my raptor contacts and they were OK but devastated by the enormity of this quake. In November, 2004 I was at Sendai with some Japanese osprey colleagues, and remember being at the Sendai river mouth watching ospreys. There were three adult males fishing and then perching on stakes in the water – none were ringed, and I thought it was a good place to study them. My diary tells me that we saw an immature goshawk fly over; as well as great and little egrets, spot-billed ducks and slaty-backed gulls in the lagoon. After watching a Japanese wagtail in a garden we drove on up the rocky coast with beautiful bays, rocky islands and ancient trees. Very hard to imagine the devastation on the news with the tranquility of that day.

Sendal River mouth November 2004

Male osprey Sendal, November 2004