This year is the 20th anniversary of the Rutland Osprey Project, and on Friday 15th July we celebrated that fact with a special osprey cruise! The date was chosen specifically because it was on that day 20 years ago that the first juvenile ospreys were brought down to England from Scotland and released at Rutland Water. Since the first translocated osprey returned and subsequently bred, we have had over 100 chicks fledge from nests in the area, and now have seven breeding pairs.
The event was a huge success, and was enjoyed by all. It began in Normanton Church with a glass of Prosecco and an introduction, then we boarded the Rutland Belle for an hour and a half cruise. To everyone’s delight, several ospreys made an appearance on the cruise, diving for fish and putting on a great display! There was hardly a time during the whole trip where an osprey wasn’t in sight. On return to the church the happy group disembarked the boat and were treated to a delicious buffet provided by the Rutland Belle.
All in all this special event was a fitting celebration of the 20 fabulous years since the osprey project began. A massive thank you to the Rutland Belle staff, Jonathan from Anglian Water and my colleagues at the Wildlife Trust for making this event the success it was. Thanks also to Pete Murray for the following photographs!