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The Ubiquitous Blue 24

Posted: Sunday 31st July 2016 by Emyr MWT

As I walked the 500m of boardwalk to the 360 Observatory yesterday morning to open up for the day at 09:45, we already had visitors queueing up.

 

By the time I'd had a good look at the nest through the scopes, I realised that we had a visitor queuing up at the nest as well. Our old friend was back - Blue 24

 

 

As we approach August, that means one thing at the Dyfi - Glesni spends increasingly more of her time away from the nest and that is a huge green light for other females, and males, to wander in and have a good look around. Blue 24 was, as usual, first in the queue.

Glesni's work is almost done for the season. She has started fishing for herself again and will be gaining back some condition before she heads south in two or three weeks' time. In previous years she departed:

 

2013 - 31st August

2014 - 19th August

2015 - 24th August

 

Glesni fishing for herself again - a huge mullet

 

Glesni was only away for a couple of hours yesterday morning.  No sooner had Blue 24 alighted the camera pole for a preening session, Glesni was back and quickly dispatched Blue 24 to her favourite perch down the estuary.


Calm before the storm - Blue 24 (left) sees Glesni approaching

 
Fish-Slap. Glesni attacks Blue 24 on her nest - with a fish!

 
Glesni (above) chases Blue 24 down the estuary


August is a great time to try and identify intruder ospreys due to the nest being left unguarded for several hours at a time on occasions. It's next to impossible to ID birds, even those with leg rings, when they are in flight - we need them to land to have any realistic chance of identifying them.

We have recorded many August intruders over the years, including CU2 (Jimmy) - a Scottish male and Blue 80, a Glaslyn male returning to Wales as a two-year-old in 2014.

 

Deri's (Glesni & Monty's daughter) response to an intruding osprey in August 2014 is very similar to Tegid's yesterday..



After all the sadness this year with Blue 24 laying three eggs in a male-less nest and Glesni and Monty having Ceri die and their second egg not hatch, there is a silver lining. Tegid will have the attention of his parents all to himself now - he has the greatest chance possible of growing up to be a healthy, strong juvenile and be in the best condition he can be by the end of August for what will be the greatest journey of his life.


"Hello Auntie 24 - how big are you..?"                                                                               50p


We've received confirmation that we can take the other osprey nest platform down over the winter - it should never have been there to start with. At 300m away from the main nest, it is far too close. Four out of six eggs not hatching this year is such a waste.

The results of Glesni's second egg analysis are due soon, we will share them with you once we have the full report. As for Blue 24, we hope she returns next year but to a nest where she has a realistic chance of breeding. She needs another nest far enough away from Glesni's nest (there are plenty around) and a male. We'd miss having her around, but at seven years old next year, she needs to settle down and have a family of her own.

 

 

We do something a bit different in August with our nest cameras. Apart from the the Live Streaming camera, we train the others, especially during late evening and early morning, on various perches around the nest that we know, from previous experience, intruding ospreys like to perch on.

You never know, Gwynant could well be out there, as could many other Dyfi offspring from previous years, we've already seen Clarach return this season - the first ever Dyfi offspring to do so. They may only land for a second or two, but we've given ourselves the best possible chance of identifying them.

Blue 24 joins Monty on the second nest yesterday morning

 


 

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