Osprey Ambassadors’ Party

Osprey Ambassadors are children in local primary and secondary schools in the Stamford and Rutland area, who act as the link between the Rutland Osprey Project and their school. The Osprey Ambassadors Party, was held on Sunday 1st October 2017.

The Rutland Ospreys have now all migrated to West Africa, and this week end a special event marked the end of the 2017 osprey season. Bye-bye Osprey week or BOW finished with an Osprey Ambassadors party!

Seventeen children, who are Osprey Ambassadors in eleven local schools, accompanied by thie family and friends met at the Volunteer Training Centre on Sunday. This end of season party was organised by the Osprey Education Team, and Pete Jackie and Ken gave a special thank-you to the children for their hard work in their schools during the year, and their continued active interest in this project.

We began with brief highlights of the year, including World Osprey Week in March, the “Ospreys and us Video” competition, our links with the Urdaibai Bird Reserve in northern Spain, the monthly Ambassadors Osprey Club and our part on the Wildlife Trusts stand at the Rutland Water Bird Fair.

The children then enjoyed some osprey related games such as Musical Migrating Ospreys, Pass the Osprey, and Pin the Zygodactylic Toe on the Osprey.

No party would be complete without food, and Liz Elsden produced a specular spread with her signature chocolate osprey cake, osprey cupcakes, and a huge array of colourful fruits, sweets and jelly all with an animal theme!

The afternoon finished with a birdwatching session from the VTC gallery looking out over Rutland Water. The young Osprey Ambassadors now are all looking forward to next year when the ospreys return.

Words and photographs by Education Officer Pete Murray. 

Party introduction

Pass the osprey

Pin the toe on the osprey

Alex and Alex – winners of pin the toe

Party food, Liz Elsden

Osprey cupcakes


World Osprey Week 2018 – 12th   to 18th March

World Osprey Week or WOW celebrates the return of the Rutland Ospreys It is possible to teach your lessons using osprey based teaching resources. Schools can simply register and then use our FREE primary and secondary teaching resources including worksheets (with teacher’s notes), lesson plans, fun activities and project ideas that cover a wide range of national curriculum subjects.





Season's end

Season’s end

It’s amazing how quickly the season goes, September always creeps up rather rapidly! All of the ospreys have now departed – there was a late-leaving juvenile who was hanging around Lagoon 4 for a while, but he has now left us too. The Lyndon Centre’s last day was Sunday 10th September, and that evening we celebrated with a thank you event to our osprey volunteers, with drinks, food and entertainment! Volunteers are vital to the success of the project, and we really can’t thank them enough. 

This season has been incredible – with eight breeding pairs we have had the best breeding success to date. 15 chicks successfully fledged this season, which makes our total number of fledged ospreys a whopping 132! Visitor numbers were high again this year, over 26,000 people came to see the ospreys at the Lyndon Reserve! We would like to thank everyone who visited us at Lyndon, followed us online and watched our webcam, your support is vital and we hope to see you again next year! The webcam is now offline, and will be reinstated next spring, when the Lyndon Centre opens again in March.

Here is a great video showing highlights of the 2017 season, created by our wonderful Information Officer Holly Hucknall. If you visited us at Birdfair or earlier this month, you may have already seen this, but if so it’s worth watching again!



Party time!

Yeehaw! We had such a wonderful time at our end of season barn dance last Friday! A huge thank you to The Navigation Band who were absolutely brilliant, and made the evening super special with their excellent music and patient caller! Thanks also to the Roasting Pig Co. for their succulent hog roast and to Patricia Clarke for the bar.

Special thanks must go out to everyone who attended the dance, helped us raise almost £200 on our raffle and joined in enthusiastically with the dancing! Here are some pictures of us all having fun, thank you to volunteer Matthew Blurton for the photographs.

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Common Blue by Sam Newcombe

Celebrity interviews

Thanks to Education Officer Pete Murray for the following blog and videos from the Osprey Stand at Birdfair! Many thanks to Mike Dilger and Nick Baker for joining Sam at the Osprey Tent, to Paul and Abi for being interviewed too, and to Sam for being such a star! 

The Bird Fair Interviews

This year the Rutland Osprey stand hosted a series of short interviews which we captured on video for your interest and entertainment.

Sam Newcombe is 11 years old and very enthusiastic school Osprey Ambassador at Casterton Primary School. He arranged interviews with TV personalities Nick Baker and Mike Dilger at Bird Fair.

Enjoy their answers to Sam’s questions, including Nick’s description of a duck catching and eating a swallow on an Osprey Cruise, and Mike’s amazing impersonation of one of his favourite south American birds, in their interviews at Bird Fair.

07-Interview Mike Dilger -IMG_6045-001

08-Making the video-IMG_6050-001

06-interview Nick Baker-IMG_6034-001

We have also included recorded two short interviews Sam made at Bird Fair, with two other people who have valuable roles in the project.  Paul Stammers is the Osprey Project Information Officer and Abi Mustard is a young volunteer on the project now studying Biology at University. Paul and Abi tell Sam about who inspired them with their interest in natural history.

Jackie Murray, Education Officer for the Osprey Project, talks to Maisie who has visited the Lyndon reserve and actively follows the progress of the osprey project from her home in Bath. Maisie explains about the “Ozzie migration messages”, written by children visiting the Lyndon Reserve and Bird Fair ,which will be  to be sent to children visiting  the Urdaibai Bird reserve in the Basque area of Northern Spain.

The Osprey Ambassador interviews

Many local schools in the Rutland Water area have chosen Osprey Ambassadors who are our link with their school. The Ambassadors have a monthly “Osprey Club” at the Waderscape hide, where they get the latest news about the ospreys, get a chance to watch the ospreys in and around the nest site as well as other wildlife on the reserve. They take the latest osprey news and regular short presentations to share with other pupils at their school.

Jackie interviews four ambassadors in the hide and the Ambassadors explain about what they have done in their schools.

Finally, here are some amazing photographs taken by Sam over the Birdfair weekend, thanks for these Sam!

Common Blue by Sam Newcombe

Common Blue by Sam Newcombe

Egret by Sam Newcombe

Egret by Sam Newcombe

Green sandpiper by Sam Newcombe

Green sandpiper by Sam Newcombe

Little Grebe and chick by Sam Newcombe

Little Grebe and chick by Sam Newcombe

Red underwing by Sam Newcombe

Red underwing by Sam Newcombe

Small Copper by Sam Newcombe

Small Copper by Sam Newcombe

Juvenile tern by Sam Newcombe

Juvenile tern by Sam Newcombe

Water rail by Sam Newcombe

Water rail by Sam Newcombe




So you’re leaving in the morning

Well it’s certainly been a great bank holiday weekend! Our final osprey cruise on Saturday was a success, the weather has been wonderful and so many people have visited the Lyndon Centre to catch what may be their last glimpse of the Manton Bay ospreys this year.

This weekend’s sightings may well be the last we have of Maya. She was present in the bay with 33 all day on Saturday, however, we believe that she set off on her migration on Sunday morning, as she left the bay at 11:30 and has not returned since. Last season Maya didn’t leave until 6th September, so we thought she may stay a while longer! 33 is still here though, catching fish and seeing off intruders!

33 mantling over a fish

33 mantling over a fish


Here is Maya’s last appearance on the Manton Bay nest, yesterday morning.

Maya's last appearance on the nest

Maya’s last appearance on the nest in 2017


We can only wonder where Maya is right now, but there is a Rutland osprey who’s location we do know! 30(05) is our satellite-tagged osprey, and she also set off on her migration yesterday!

She left fairly early yesterday morning, and by 12:00 she was already in Hampshire. She crossed the channel at Christchurch (east of Bournemouth and west of the Isle of Wight) just after 1pm, and made landfall in Cherbourg in France at 4pm. Her final data point is at 5pm, just east of Créances. The total distance she travelled yesterday was 245 miles / 395 km.

As she’s only just set off we don’t have much data just yet, but we receive it every few days and will keep you updated as and when we have more information. Exciting times!

30's journey yesterday

30’s journey 27th August


I wonder whether 30(05) will have arrived at her wintering grounds by the time we have our end of season celebration? It would be amazing if she arrived on her beach in Senegal on the day of our special celebratory party, which is 12 days away. 30’s fastest migration was 11 days, so it’s possible!

Our end of year celebration is on Friday 8th September, and we’ve planned a fun-filled evening of dancing to music by the Navigation Band, socialising at the beautiful village hall in Manton village, drinking local ales provided by Patricia Clarke, and gorging on a superb all-you-can-eat hog roast provided by the Roasting Pig Co.

We also have a raffle with some excellent prizes, including the following (pictured) plus a session in the hide at the River Gwash Trout Farm next year (!), and many more gems!


We look forward to celebrating with our loyal supporters!

Click here to book tickets, there are not many left!