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Has she, hasn’t she?

Posted: Thursday 16th August 2018 by Karis MWT

They’re still giving us the run around!

Telyn arrived at the nest on Tuesday afternoon, 17:37 to be exact, with a half-eaten mullet for her chicks. She stayed around the nest for just over half an hour, before disappearing again at 18:08. This was perfectly normal for her and we thought nothing more of it. She stayed away all night, and she still hadn’t been back to the nest come sunrise the following day.

By mid-morning we were getting suspicious, and there was much speculation surrounding her whereabouts. Closing time came on the very wet and windy Wednesday and we still hadn’t seen anything of Telyn. It was now approaching 24 hours since we had seen her; had she known about the incoming weather and set off before it arrived, or was she simply hunkered down somewhere waiting for the storm to pass? We’d give her until the morning.

Telyn, looking stunning in the sunshine before she left. Or had she?
MWT Telyn

There was still no sign of her this morning when we opened up. Almost 40 hours had passed since she was last seen and we were fairly sure she had set off on her migration. A call then came through on the radio – there was an osprey approaching the nest with a fish. It was Monty and he had brought a good-sized flounder in for Helyg and Dinas. Helyg got a little carried away and yet again took a firm hold of Monty’s foot - she was determined not to let her breakfast get away (we’ve lost count of how many times she has done this now, he must have the patience of a saint!). She eventually let go and Monty made a quick getaway with all toes and talons intact.

Helyg happily tucked in to the actual fish, with brother Dinas perched on the edge of the nest waiting patiently for his turn. Another call then came through on the radio. There was another osprey approaching the nest with another fish - only 12 minutes after the last one was delivered. In it came, flying straight up onto the nest. It was indeed an osprey carrying a fish, but it wasn’t Monty. Blue leg ring, right leg, 3J; Telyn had returned! Time to eat our hats and go back to the drawing board for this week’s blog…

Telyn returns with a massive fish following a two-day 'staycation'

A few minutes later we had a full-house again - surely one of the last time we'll see all five ospreys on the nest?

Full-house

 

Practice makes perfect

We have seen some new behaviour from our chicks this week. As adults they will not only have to catch their own fish, but they must also be able to carry them aerodynamically, as well as land and feed on branches and perches without losing their balance (or their lunch!). We have seen all three chicks practising the latter skills, but there is still time for one of them to ‘do an Eitha’, defy the textbooks, and catch a fish of their own before they migrate.

Alys back on the nest perch after a short flight with the remains of her supper. Her sister couldn't steal it from her over there!
MWT Alys

Left a bit, right a bit.

Those of you watching the live-streaming on Monday will have noticed something a little different. In addition to carrying their own food, the chicks will also have to learn how to carry sticks and branches to build and develop their own nests. Dinas took this stick for a quick fly around before landing on the camera pole. Perfectly lodged, we can’t fault his technique, however it did hinder our 4K Live Streaming camera for a number of hours! Luckily for us, Telyn flew across to the camera pole later in the day and dislodged it. The offending stick was up there for a little while, but thankfully we didn’t see it on the LS again!

Dinas needs to work on his housekeeping! Mum to the rescue...
MWT Dinas stick

If the past seven years are anything to go by, we could have three, maybe even four weeks left with Monty as he waits for his chicks to depart. We know, however, that nothing is for certain in the osprey world, and as far as the Dyfi birds are concerned, rules are made to be broken!

Looks like Monty might be moulting a flight feather. He should still have a few weeks to get those feathers in peak condition before he heads south on his migration.
MWT Monty moulting


 

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