Return of Balgavies ospreys

Looking for the Ospreys!
Looking for the Ospreys!

PEOPLE in Angus are delighted as the famous ospreys from Balgavies Loch have made a return to the county.

Back in 2012, the Balgavies Loch ospreys hatched the first recorded chick at the Scottish Wildlife Trust reserve which is situated to the east of Forfar.

It was a great result after failed attempts in previous years to mate in a nest over which they had to fight a pair of squatting greylag geese who also wanted the nest.

Last Wednesday, the hide at Balgavies was packed with visitors who were eager to catch an early glimpse of the well-travelled birds.

Initially, the male arrived back on Sunday and had been busy repairing the nest when he was followed by his female friend.

The male has been positively identified by his ring number and it is almost certain that it is the same female accompanying him.

When the male first arrived, the geese were situated on the nest but they appear to have gone and the ospreys have been enjoying a spot of fishing.

The pair’s first chick, known as Solo by locals, is doing well thousands of miles away in Senegal, Africa.

Regular transmissions have shown where the bird has been travelling as he is tagged.

Ospreys are superb fishers and eat a huge amount of fish, it makes up around 99 per cent of their diet.

Because of this appetite, these birds can be found near ponds, rivers, lakes, lochs such as at Balgavies, and coastal waterways around the world.

Ospreys hunt by diving to the water’s surface from some 30 to 100 feet up. They have gripping pads on their feet to help them pluck fish from the water with their curved claws and carry them for great distances.

In flight, ospreys will orient the fish headfirst to ease wind resistance.