Meet The Ospreys
The Dyfi male osprey is called Monty, or Maldwyn in Welsh, after Montgomeryshire. After we put the nest platform up in 2007, Monty had made it his own by the following year. In 2008 he was seen bringing nest material to the new nest in an attempt to build it up, and since that time he's had a few other ospreys for company, including another male bird - 'Scraggly', see below.
Monty is quite unusual for a male osprey, he has two very unique features. He has relatively dark chest plumage and quite dark under-wing feathering, features usually associated with females. He also has very dark, orange eyes - usually adult ospreys have yellow eyes.
We're not sure where Monty is from, but there is a strong possibility that he's the offspring from the first osprey pair to successfully breed in Wales (in modern times) near Welshpool in 2004. The single male chick from this nest could not be ringed at the time as the nest was too high, so it would make sense that Monty might from this nest as he is also un-ringed. All the other osprey chicks hatched in England and Wales that we know about have been ringed. The timing also makes sense as he would have come back to roughly the same place as he was raised to prospect for nesting sites as a youngster, probably from 2006/7 onwards. The Dyfi nest is just 28 miles away from the Welshpool nest as the osprey flies - just an hour's flight away.
Monty on one of his (rather dangerous) favourite perching posts © Emyr Evans/MWT
Nora comes from another Wildlife Trust reserve; she was one of a clutch of three young from Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trusts' Rutland Water project in 2008. Nora has a white ring with the numbers 03 on her right leg, placed there when she was five weeks old at the nest in June 2008. She is four years old (in 2012) so we're almost certain that she has not bred anywhere else before other than the Dyfi.
Nora comes from good stock - her father, also ringed 03 but on the left leg (1998), is one of the original birds from the translocation project from the mid 90's. To date he has successfully sired over 20 ospreys at Rutland Water and around half of these have been positively identified as having returned to the UK, a phenomenal success rate.
Nora doesn't like flounder but is quite keen on the mullet Monty brings back to her - female ospreys rely on their partners for food during the breeding season and usually don't do any fishing for themselves. Nora gets her name form the first time we ever saw her on April 9th, 2011 - we can't possibly say why on here however!
Nora defending her nest from an intruder osprey shortly after arriving in April 2011. © Emyr Evans/MWT
Nora did not return in 2013 - sadly, we have to asume she has come to grief somewhere - see here
This male osprey has been around since 2009 and in 2010 actually 'shared' the nest with Monty as neither of them could find a mate. Ospreys are more sociable than most birds of prey and this would explain a lot of seemingly strange behaviours we witnessed in 2010. He gets his name as he literally looks quite scraggly in appearance, also being small of stature. He has a very white chest and pale wing feathers but we can't be sure whether we've seen him in 2011 as Monty usually saw off most 'intruders', but a very similar bird to Scraggly did make a quick appearance in June 2011. Scraggly is not ringed.
Update: Scraggly was not seen at all in 2012.
Scraggly - aptly describes is name choice, June 2010 © MWT