So much for the warmer weather over recent weeks making us think summer was here – the past couple of days have been very wet and windy! Today in particular was a wildly windy one, and the rain meant that poor Maya spent most of the day huddled up over her two very large, three-week-old chicks.
But let me start with yesterday! 33 brought in a great big roach yesterday morning at 05:06 – in the video below you can see him coming in with it. It was a very large specimen, but Maya wasn’t that bothered, so 33 took off with it!
He brought it back later after eating the head, and this time Maya showed more interest.
What a lovely sunrise yesterday – there wasn’t a hint of anything like this on the camera this morning!
At 15:43 another huge fish was delivered, this 33 ate the head first before bringing it to the nest, possibly because of Maya’s lack of reaction to his first fish! This fish was a trout, and as 33 landed he plonked it straight onto the back of the larger chick!
That wasn’t it for the fish deliveries yesterday – at 20:27 33 delivered yet another one – another nice roach. Maya and the chicks still had not finished the trout, and both of these fish were left on the nest all night.
In addition to all the fish, there was also an intruder at the nest site yesterday morning. As you can see, 33 got much more upset than Maya, which is usually the case. The bird didn’t come near enough to cause any real worry, which of course means we couldn’t identify it either. It could have been one of several unattached males or one of the two two-year-olds.
Onto today! At 04:34 this morning, Maya awoke and decided she was going to have some old fish for breakfast. The older chick slept on, but the smaller one became interested, so Maya decided to share.
At 05:29, when it was light enough to look like day, despite the mist, 33 flew in and took off with the roach from last night.
While 33 tucked into the roach on the T-perch, Maya fed the chicks from the remains of yesterday afternoon’s large trout.
33 then brought the roach back at 05:45, and Maya fed the chicks on that!
It was a morning of fish swaps and feeding, along with plenty of rain and gale-force wind. Maya did a fantastic job of keeping the chicks warm and dry, which is important when they are still not feathered and don’t have the benefit of fairly waterproof plumage. At one point today, 33 came to the nest and stood in front of Maya as she brooded the chicks, as though shielding her from the wind.
At the time of writing, there has been no fresh fish delivered to the nest today. However, as they had several feeds this morning from two large fish from yesterday, this won’t adversely affect them. The wind makes it difficult for ospreys to fish, as it affects visibility. Hopefully the wind will die down a bit later on, and 33 can try fishing then.
Thankfully no more aggression has been witnessed since the last attack we documented. The two chicks have been curled up together under Maya for most of today, making the most of each other’s warmth. Every time a fish has come in, the two have lined up obediently and waited their turn for a mouthful. Those are the sort of manners we want to see!