Jeremy Paxman’s osprey has started to head north – PX1

Close up of the head of an osprey chickTweed Valley birds are back

Great news from Tweed Valley Osprey Project in 2018 – birds have started to return to their territories. We have the cameras set up and ready for watching ospreys at the two centres at Glentress Forest Wildwatch Room and at Kailzie Gardens Osprey and Wildlife Watch Centre.

Has SS returned?

So far, we think that the ‘back up’ nest 2 pair (8C and unringed) have returned safe and well. Birds were seen up at the nest but we have no confirmation of ring numbers yet. Ospreys have been seen at the main nest but, we have no confirmation which birds they were. We are hoping that it is SS with his partner but will have to be patient to find out for certain.

If he is back, then this would bode well for him, as a good early return could signify better luck for a successful breeding season after his disastrous season last year. Poor weather over the Easter weekend and more snow has meant nests are covered in the white stuff yet again, and no birds were seen at either nest, presumably because of this.

Jeremy Paxman’s osprey – PX1 migrating north

PX1at ringing time 2016

We are delighted to find out that PX1 the bird that was filmed being ringed on Jeremy Paxman’s programme, ‘The River’ (and hence given the ring number PX1 as Paxmans bird) has started his northward migration and is on his way back to the UK. He has spent two winters in Southern Mali, near to the gold mines at Sanso. He has barely moved from the region in that time, finding all his needs met by the landscape, which provided good roosts and plentiful fish in the lagoons and river systems.

We have contacted Jeremy to let him know the good news that his bird is on his way to return to the UK, and Jeremy said:

How wonderful to have such an insight into the life of another creature. I’m thrilled. What magnificent birds they are!”

Jeremy will be following his bird’s progress closely, and we will send him the details of PX1’s journey as he progresses on his first return migration as a two year-old osprey.

He set off on 28 March at just after 10am and flew 271 km to roost in a remote and arid landscape with clumps of trees and bushes dotted about. He set off again just after 6am on 29 March and flew 10km further north, then he circled the area for a while before pressing on to cross the Mauritanian border and into a more lush vegetative landscape about 20km from Adel Bagrou.

We have not received any further data since then, but we can expect a lag due to there being few phone masts in the remote region from which to pick up signal. We are now very excited waiting for an update of data transmissions to find out how he is progressing.

journey 28th to 29th march leaving sanso fullmap

Leaving Sanso 28th March and heading North

last data 29th March map

An overnight roost on 28th and continues north on 29th March

Last tracked point 29th March near buildings

Last known area he was tracked at on 29th March

Waiting for news of FK8

We are also waiting for an update from FK8, the female osprey in Portugal, as we would expect her to be travelling to her summer grounds in the north of Scotland too. She will be 4 years old this year, and fingers crossed will find a mate and raise her first brood.

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