Osprey (Pandion haliaetus)

Osprey (Pandion haliaetus)

The first Osprey recorded this year was at Holy Loch near Dunoon, Cowal on 27th March by Mark Utting. Further sightings followed at Sorobaidh Bay, Tiree on 31st March with one in Kintyre on 2nd April and another in central Cowal on 3rd April.

The Osprey is no stranger to fame and attention and its pursuits have been followed closely by nest cams in the locations where it breeds in Speyside and Perth in Scotland, Kielder, Cumbria and East Midlands in England, and the Dyfi Valley in Wales. A migratory bird, it is present in the UK in summer. Ospreys eat fish, catching them in spectacular fashion as they dive towards lakes and lochs, stretching out their talons and scooping them out of the water with ease and carrying them off, as in John Speirs wonderful photo.

The Osprey is a brown-and-white bird which could possibly be mistaken for a seagull at a distance. It is a large bird of prey with dark brown upperparts and contrasting white underparts that can appear mottled in females. Their heads are white with a dark brown through their eyes. Their wings during flight show strong barring and distinctively dark brown, angled ‘wrists’.

Ospreys migrate to West Africa during winter and satellite tracking has shown them flying up to 430 km in just one day. It takes them about 20 flying days to complete the journey, but, in autumn, birds stop off to refuel at lakes and reservoirs. We are fortunate to also have them now breeding in Argyll where they have become well established over the last twenty years.

Click on the link below to learn more about the Osprey :-