Birds of a feather

33 brought in a big trout at about 08:45 this morning, and ate it for over an hour before bringing it to the nest. The chicks looked full already, and Maya wasn’t food begging – she was dozing! This led me to believe 33 must have brought another fish in earlier, so was now treating himself to a well-earned fish head!

33 with trout

33 with trout

 

After he’d eaten the head of the fish, he brought it to the nest. In the video below you can see him coming in the distance as he flies towards the nest – he’ll always fly into the wind, which is great for us when it’s blowing from the west, as it means we can see him coming straight for the nest on the wide-angle camera!

Fish delivery

Fish delivery

Feeding the chicks

Feeding the chicks

 

In the above video, you can also see that one of the chicks tries to have a crafty nibble at the fish! The chicks will start to eat on their own in the next few weeks, without Maya having to rip bits off for them. After trying to bite the slippery sides of the fish and getting nowhere, as we have seen them do already, they eventually learn that the best way to get into the fish is through the gills. Unless Dad has eaten the head, of course, then they’re straight in, no messing!

I know we keep saying this, but it’s true – the chicks are HUGE! Now they’re four weeks old, and you can really see their feathers popping through the down, each feather looking like it’s been dipped in honey. This helps to keep the chicks camouflaged on the nest. Maya and 33 are very good at bringing in nest material to match the chicks’ colouring! Speaking of which, here is a video of 33 bringing in some nest lining today.

33 with nest material

33 with nest material

 

Maya has been busy moving sticks about today, too!

Maya with stick

Maya with stick

Maya moving a stick

Maya moving a stick

 

Late this morning, while the chicks were still sleeping off their most recent helping of trout, Maya took a minute to herself to have a fly around, wash her feet in the water and have a nice, refreshing bath! Here she is on the T-perch, drying off, before she flies back to her youngsters on the nest.

Maya and the chicks

Maya back with the chicks

 

The third chick is catching up with the other two in terms of size, but we can still tell which one is the youngest due to the fact that he/she has much more down and less feathers! Here you can see the youngest chick lying in-between the others.

Littlest in the middle

Littlest in the middle

 

And if we zoom in… we can get some really close up shots of the chicks, with their new feathers in fine definition!

Feathers close up

Feathers close up

Feather comparison - youngest on left

Feather comparison – youngest on left

Bottoms!

Bottoms!

 

And here’s a nice one of the Manton Bay Ospreys all together on the nest this evening.

Snoozing on the nest together

Snoozing on the nest together

 

4 responses to “Birds of a feather”

  1. Mike Simmonds

    Kayleigh thank you once again for a full and detailed Blog.

  2. BecOwl

    Thank you for all the updates. The chicks really are very well camouflaged.

  3. Roo

    Many thanks for the fascinating updates Kayleigh. When will the youngsters get their identifying leg rings and are there any plans to fit any of them with tracking devices to follow their migration?