Cyril the Red

  • Great pictures Hazel. I have only seen a Red Squirrel once, and that was on Jersey.

  • In reply to HAZY:

    Ah good, Hazel, thought you might have seen an Osprey at LM--lucky you! I meant that nest at Foulshaw but had forgotten how to spell it and was too lazy to check--was it Foul or Fowl?!--Lol! The distance between the Foulshaw reserve and LM looks to be about 9-ish km, 5.6 miles or so, which might be alright as far as placement goes, and probably why CWT said it would be ok to erect a platform at LM. The 10 nests in the Rutland Water area are spread out over a wide area, many 10s of miles across. But the nest on view to the public there still has younger Ospreys without nests intruding over or on the nest through much of the late spring and summer, and I am fairly sure the other nests experience the same. I remember reading about one male, the famous Mr Rutland, fighting with one of his own offspring from an earlier year and one or two other younger male Ospreys over possession of his own nest, and somehow losing out, and I seem to remember that may have ruined the chances of success for that nest that year. The more intrusions there are, especially at crucial times when there are eggs or very young chicks, the more the male there can be diverted from providing fish for all of them and into chasing off intruding Ospreys who may try to take over the nest site. Ospreys can badly injure each other, resulting in the worst-off one (or even worse, both) being unable to fly or to fish, leading to a dire outcome for him (or her--sometimes females fight over ownership of a nest, especially early in the season) and possible failure for that nest that year. Bad weather complicates things, too, making it difficult for the male to see the fish and for the adults to shield and incubate the eggs (the female does that for most of the time, although the male relieves her occasionally) or to shield the chicks while also regularly feeding them (the female again does most or all of that). They could do without intruding Ospreys, but at the same time, having intruding Ospreys probably is ultimately a good thing for the overall Osprey population--it means there are birds available to step into a vacancy when an Osprey fails to return the following spring (or to set up home with another Osprey at a new site) expanding that particular loose colony. Translocating juvenile Ospreys speeds up the process of expanding the range of Ospreys across a wider area, in our case, the UK, by seeding other loose colonies (Poole Harbour is currently in the very early stages of that--no fully active nests there yet, although there was a pair for two of the last 3 seasons, none yet established early enough for fertile eggs and chicks). It will still take many years before Ospreys here occupy the area they had hundreds of years ago, namely over the whole of the UK--none of us are likely to see that although, fingers crossed, many generations down the line may, provided folks now actually do enough about the climate crisis (and hurry up with the rewilding!) Right, I'll get off my soapbox!

    Kind regards, Ann

  • Phew, I got throught that, I hope you are having a cuppa now Ann!

    Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

  • In reply to Gardenbirder:

    Cheers Ann, you certainly know your stuff :-)

    Lot to learn

  • Sorry, Catlady, for the lecture--well done you for sticking with it to the bitter end! Also sorry to Gaynor--I am just obsessed with Ospreys (as you probably guessed by now!), which should explain it all! There may be a cure but I am not looking for one, and of course, the obsession may fade of its own accord eventually. Meanwhile, I am enjoying it. Nine seasons and counting, but it is simply my current mania (and chief distraction from the virus situation!) My nine seasons pale into insignificance compared to that of some others, and Osprey obsession has occupied or is occupying the whole of several lifelong academic and/or conservationist lives around the world! There are also many others like me, not professionals working with Ospreys but simply members of the general public who happen to be self-acknowledged Ospreyholics or have what some call Ospreyitis. Most claim there is no cure, once addicted, that's it--Lol!

    Kind regards, Ann

  • Thanks for the info Ann, I hope in time LM will have it's own breeding Ospreys; as for getting addicted to a particular species of interest or all birds in general I just refer myself to my neighbours as "The Bird Nerd" lol I've now even got them reporting what they see out on the water garden to me LOL Well, as they say, if you can't beat 'em then join them !!!


    Regards, Hazel 

    "Each kindness shown to birds or men is sure to flutter back again" 

  • Funny you should say that aitch ... my Emily did a cross stitch version of 'bird nerd' for me a few years back, will take a pic!


     2013 photos & vids here

    eff37 on Flickr

  • Yes, Hazel, once Ospreys nest at LM we will have one more place where, in addition to the pleasure of meeting up with you, Mike, and other Forumates, I will get my Osprey fix. My sister is truly a bird fanatic (although she is not a twitcher who chases rarities, except when she is doing a Big Year) and she has been that way for most of her life. Not too unlike your and Wendy's 'Bird Nerd' she used to call herself 'Bird Girl' when she was a teenager. We used to joke that she probably would wear her binoculars when she walked down the aisle to get married. She didn't, but she does take them nearly everywhere. In comparison to her, my Osprey obsession is the epitome of moderation! (Or should that be 'in comparison with'? Hmmm...I never know.) Unless a birder uses huge amounts of petrol chasing rarities, being a Bird Nerd is one of life's more harmless preoccupations and a fabulous distraction from some of the rest of reality.

    Kind regards, Ann