Yesterday I received a call from Paul Stammers our Information Officer, he had just spent the morning in the hide watching the two juveniles helicoptering on the nest, finally at 08:50 3AU the male, lifted high off the nest and circled before landing on the camera perch. 3AU spent the subsequent day hopping on and off the nest, learning how to swoop and soar, or more importantly how to land. He seemed to be almost taunting his sister with his amazing flying abilities. Unusually, he even spent the entire first night off the nest, leaving at 21:39 and arriving back in the morning at 04:25, it can only be presumed he spent the night on the camera perch with Maya and 33(11).
Before, he left for the night 3AU did give us a little present; he has covered our wide-angle camera by landing a very well-aimed defecation right on the camera lens.
It wasn’t until late this morning that the female chick 3AW finally made the leap, she had been helicoptering for most of the morning and just before 12:00 she managed to lift off the nest! She made her way over to the T-perch and not very gracefully managed to land on the perch next to 33(11).
Even though both chicks are now flying, they are still relying on 33(11) and Maya to catch fish and feed them. While the chicks have been enjoying their new found freedom, both Maya and 33(11) have kept a close eye on them both. Hopefully the chicks are picking up skills and experiences that will help them to fish, fly and maybe even fledge chicks of their own one day.