Posted: Tuesday 3rd April 2012 by Emyr MWT

Dyfi Osprey Monty and Nora on nestDyfi Osprey Monty and Nora on nest


We look forward to Monty's return to the Dyfi every spring of course, but particularly this year. In 2012 he returned for the first time as a father. The last time Monty saw his Dyfi nest was on September 13th 2011, when he started his migration to Africa. Here's a short video of when he landed back on his nest this year, 202 days later..

(Select 1080P for best high definition quality)

Many of you have asked questions about Monty and the Dyfi Osprey Project during the last few days. Here are some questions and answers:

Why was Monty late this year?
He wasn't! Monty arrived back on April 2nd. He was back on April 6th last year, April 4th in 2010 and April 10th in 2009. So he's actually arriving, on average, a few days earlier each year. It's just that Nora is a very early bird. She was back on March 24th this year - she waited nine days in all for him.

How do we know it's Monty every year?
Easy - he has one very defining feature - deep orange eyes. Most ospreys develop bright yellow eyes by adulthood, Monty has retained that deep orange eye colour that ospreys are born with. There are other clues as well - general size and appearance, head markings, underwing markings and chest plumage pattern. Behaviourally, Monty is the same every year too of course, having the same favourite perching, roosting and eating spots.

The future's orange, the future's Monty..

Dyfi Osprey Monty

Where does Monty come from?
We don't know. He is not ringed so we cannot trace him back to his ancestral nest. We have a theory however.. Ospreys are highly philopatric, males in particular tend to come back to very close to where they were raised when they are ready to breed themselves. The first osprey pair to successfully raise young in modern times in Wales, was a pair near Welshpool in 2004 - they had one chick, a male, which successfully fledged. Moreover, this chick was not ringed due to the location of the nest being inaccessible, Monty is not ringed. That 2004 nest is only around 30 miles away from the Dyfi nest, around an hour's flying time for an osprey. It also makes sense from a timing perspective. That 2004 male osprey would have returned to the UK in 2006 or 2007 - the exact same time as Monty was first seen prospecting for nest sites on the Dyfi.

What about live High Definition streaming?
The minute Monty landed on the nest on April 2nd, we started the ball rolling. It will cost around £4,000 in all to do this so we wanted to make sure we would have a pair of ospreys to show you first! It will take around two weeks to get everything up and running which, if everything goes to plan, will coincide with the first egg being laid. We will do everything we can to get the live streaming up and going before this.

How come, when on March 17th, Monty emailed to say he would be "back in around two weeks" he was almost spot on?
Monty has now done the same trip from Africa to mid Wales several times, he's getting better at judging arrival dates every year.

April 2nd, 2012.The happy couple, Monty and Nora, reunited after 7½ months apart

Dyfi Osprey Monty and Nora on nest

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