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Intruder Alert

Posted by on in Highland Perthshire
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Yesterday, osprey watch started quietly with mating attempts few and far between. It wasn’t until 09:20 that the action kicked off when LF15 was forced to chase off a rather persistent buzzard, who despite the initial pursuit was not put off and was spotted later in the day perched dangerously close to the osprey tree! Within an hour of the buzzard intrusion, our pair were soon protecting their nest from a different threat: another osprey. As the large (thought to be female) intruder approached their nest, both of our ospreys began alarm calling in a bid to deter this intruder from coming any closer, and despite mantling (an aggressive behaviour displayed by ospreys), the vocal pair were unsuccessful in initially scaring off the visitor. After 10 minutes of watching the unwanted osprey circling above the loch, LF15 finally gave chase but it wasn’t until 50 minutes later that the intruder was finally sent on its way!

Because of the early morning distractions, the first fish of the day wasn’t delivered until 11:20. LM12 brought back a large pike which was quickly snatched by the female who fled with it and didn’t reappear until 40 minutes later. This gave our male plenty of time to preen and give himself some TLC after the miserable weather we’ve been having over the last few days.

Shortly after lunchtime LF15 was seen giving chase to the buzzard again – despite its attempt at a rapid getaway, our female was much quicker and after several aggressive dives at the buzzard it soon got the message and disappeared. The male reappeared shortly after with another large pike, but this time he wasn’t in the mood for sharing and took off, eating the majority of his catch himself.

LM12 with his leftovers! © Scottish Wildlife Trust

LM12 with his leftovers © Scottish Wildlife Trust

Despite plenty of action, the ospreys continue to mate regularly with many of their attempts looking successful and we are now hoping that we may see eggs being laid within the next few days.

James,

Species Protection Officer.

Original author: charlotteranger
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