Migration is in full swing now for ospreys as many are leaving the UK during August. FK8 made it down to good fishing grounds at Chew Valley Lake in England on 15th August, and has resumed her journey south and left the area, having spent two days there. She made the most of the opportunity to fish at the lake, rest and to build her strength ready for the next leg of her journey. She then left the area heading south to Wareham Forest, Poole Harbour and Arne Nature Reserve down in Dorset, where she spent a further three days, no doubt taking advantage of good fishing at the harbour there. She then followed the coastline along to Weymouth, then roosted overnight near to Exmouth close to the estuary.
On 21st August, she headed further along the south coast to Soar near Plymouth, having covered another 266km since leaving Chew Valley Lake. She left UK shores near to the cliffs at Soar at 14.24pm on 21st August, to cross the channel to France. She arrived at Plouescat in France and continued travelling on to Lochrist near to Coray having covered 268 km since leaving the UK. We will receive the rest of her data from the journey as she continues south.
It is interesting to see that she didn’t cross the English Channel and the Bay of Biscay in a single journey this year. She is gaining in experience and since her return journey in the spring, which took her off course to France on her northern migration due to bad weather, it has given her knowledge that breaking her journey by coming through France is more favourable than a grueling long distance sea crossing.
PY1 (Pinky) stays behind
The ‘back up’ nest number 2, young male Perky (PY2), has also started his migration, leaving his sister Pinky (PY1) behind. She has been seen on the nest via satellite camera eating a trout most mornings but we have not seen her parents. Her tagging data doesn’t show her visiting any water, so presumably she is getting fed by her parents. Although, it is quite likely to be her dad that is still around and her mum could have left by now.
PY2 (Perky) heads off to Germany
The more adventurous of the two siblings, PY2, has made amazing progress, leaving the nest and migrating at 6.36am on 19th August. He took a south easterly route out of Tweed Valley across the UK towards Alnwick where he left the UK shores from the coastal village of Boulmer at approximately 9.30am. He went straight over the North Sea to Germany, arriving at moorland north of Hamburg, 1.69 km from the town of Sahlenburg where he spent the night, before heading on in a south easterly direction at 5.10am.
He passed Hamburg, then on past Hanover, a further 102km since his overnight roost on 19th, to a place to rest overnight on 20th August. The next morning, he was on the move again flying on to Brunswick then to Mühlhausen, for another stopover before setting off to an area beside a lake, near to the town of Niederdorla, having covered a distance of 249km since his previous roost.
It looks as though his journey is set to follow the flyway taken by the Swedish ospreys, so it will be interesting to see at which point he alters his course to a south westerly route. Weather conditions so far are favourable for our migrating birds. His sister is likely to set off any day now too, unless she is still being fed by her dad, in which case she might take advantage of that for a little longer, which is good, as she will be in tip top condition for the journey.
SS and Mrs. O
The main nest has had the resident pair spending time there over the weekend, with SS bringing a fish in for the ever so loud Mrs. O. She spent most of Sunday keeping up a deafening din but was uncharacteristically quiet on Monday, with no sign of SS around. Could he have left on Monday? We shall keep watching the nest to see if he is still around and keep an eye on Mrs. O until she leaves.
Tweed Valley Osprey Project birds further afield
There have been more sightings of Tweed Valley Project birds, FXO, the bird that was seen at the River Severn has also been spotted back at Venus ponds in Shropshire where he was photographed back in the spring. He is a two year old male bird and maybe he has hopes to nest somewhere in the Shropshire region next summer, as he certainly likes to frequent the area.
Another osprey of Tweed Valley origin is three year old male FK4, who has nested at Loch of Doon in Galloway this year.