33(11) has always been a strong character, ever since he hatched on 25th May 2011. He was born at the nest we refer to as Site B – his parents are the legendary 03(97) and the unringed female with whom 03 has been breeding since 2009.
33 was the only chick at Site B that year, as the nest suffered intensive intrusions early in the season from a non-breeding male. The female was forced to leave the eggs uncovered for long periods to chase the intruder away, and, as such, it was feared the entire clutch would fail. Therefore it was a huge relief that one chick survived. As he was the only chick in the nest, 33 did not have to compete for food or share it with siblings, and was consequently very well fed. He grew quickly into a strong, healthy juvenile.
33 fledged on 15th July 2011 (exactly the same date his son, S1, fledged in 2015!) Not long after he fledged, 33 became very adventurous. He was often seen tussling with newly-fledged Buzzards near his nest site. He also began venturing further and further away from the nest. Just two weeks after fledging, 33 disappeared for 26 hours! No-one knows where he went, but fortunately he returned safely. One day, (31st July) he even spent an afternoon on the Manton Bay nest, where he was treated as one of their brood!
33 returned to Rutland for the first time as a two-year-old on 11th May 2013. He was first spotted in Manton Bay, by Project Officer Paul Stammers and volunteer Mick Lewin, then later was seen back at his natal nest, Site B. In 2014, we all know what 33 did! He returned on 13th April and immediately began pestering Maya and 28(10) in Manton Bay. He did not give up until he chased 28 away and claimed the nest.
2015 was a much happier story, with 33 and Maya raising three beautiful chicks together. 33 proved himself to be a very sweet and attentive osprey. He appeared to enjoy spending time on the nest, more so than other males I have monitored. He was very into his incubating, even to the extent that if Maya didn’t move, he’d just join her!
He even sometimes plonked himself down in the nest when there was no incubating to be done!
33 was a brilliant partner to Maya and incredibly good at providing fish for his growing family! He has provided us with much entertainment and delight over his first breeding season. We are all incredibly happy that Maya and 33 returned to Manton Bay and bred successfully, and we hope they continue to breed here together in future years.