Wednesday, 2 July 2008

The Big Day

We are delighted to report that the ringing day for our young Ospreys was a great success. The weather stayed fine and we were able to get our expert team on site and the whole process achieved in a hour. The procedure is designed to give us our one and only chance ever to handle the chicks, and collect scientific data, whilst minimising any stress to the birds.

Our expert Forestry Commission climber braved the enormous nest to bring the chicks down to earth, where they were weighed, measured, ringed and given a thorough medical by our wildlife vet. If anything it must be said the chicks were larger in real life than they seem on camera - really adult size already, just with a bit more feather development to go. They were amazingly calm and easy to handle, and exquisitely beautiful up close.

The vet was pleased to report they all appeared to be healthy, if a little thin ( less than ideal but not dangerously thin), even the smallest chick. Whilst it is impossible to say for certain until blood test results are in, it appears we have two female sand a male chick- the smallest being the wee man!

The chicks were given their identity rings (called darvic rings) which are white just like dad's, and carry the numbers, CA CB and CC. These rings will be invaluable in tracing what happens to our chicks in the future and identifying them if and when they make it back to Scotland as adults.

Mum was back on the nest within half an hour of our leaving and Dad brought a fish in to console the wee ones less than an hour later- they all seem to be none the worse for wear after their adventure.

We are pleased to report that the backup nest chicks we also ringed yesterday, and there were two delightful chicks (one female one male we think) but no clues as to the fate of the original third sibling. These were also healthy and hearty and were given ring numbers CE and CF.

I hope to post pictures of the ringing on the blog tomorrow.

A big thank you to all the ringing team for their expert work and a very successful ringing day.

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