Four’s a party!

Well, Maya surprised us all by laying a fourth egg today! In each of her previous six years of breeding, she has only ever laid three eggs. We were all just thinking how nice it was that the Manton Bay pair had their full clutch and were happily incubating, then out pops egg number four!

I first noticed that there were four eggs when I saw Maya stand up at 12:24 to shout at a greylag goose that flew too close to the nest.


I couldn’t believe my eyes! I had to watch it back on the main camera a few times over. I then rewound through the recordings, attempting to locate the moment it was laid. At 11:36, 33 was happily incubating. Then Maya flew in and seemed keen to incubate, standing very close to 33, almost, but not quite, pushing him. He stood up, clearly revealing three eggs, and the pair swapped over.

In the four minutes before Maya rose again, she looked a bit uncomfortable and was clearly laying another egg, as when she stood up at 11:40 there were four!

Here’s a nice close up of Maya with her clutch of four.

Here’s 33 settling in to incubate four eggs for the very first time. He took it all in his stride, as expected!

As this is the first time Maya has laid four eggs, we are very excited to see what will happen. It has been known for ospreys to raise four chicks, as happened at Kielder last year, and we are sure that Maya and 33 will be perfectly capable of raising a brood of four. They are experienced parents and we have all seen just how attentive they are, and how good 33 is at providing fish for his family. This could be a very exciting season!

Lovely pair! Us and our eggs

Maya's four eggs





5 responses to “Four’s a party!”

  1. Valerie

    Many congratulations , how great is that going to be watching 4 juveniles flying when I come up for the birdfair , good news Rutland and Maya and 33 are such a great pair , wonderful parents

  2. Sheila Elliott

    I can feel your excitement, Kayleigh, and share it!! I don’t know about 33 taking it all in his stride, how did Maya lay that fourth egg so effortlessly and unnoticed!! It will be really interesting to watch four chicks grow and develop under the care of them both. You will have to ask Jamie to keep the stocks up!!
    Threave and Balgavies also had four last year, and I believe they all fledged.

  3. Bill Hunt

    Stunning…..In the Rutland “Osprey facts” I read recently that Ospreys occasionally lay 4 but never thought I would see it. I momentarily hoped and thought how, if any pair was equipped to raise 4 chicks Maya and 33 are! Well, what a wonderful bonus this is! Here’s hoping this year the weather is on their side. It will certainly be a busy season and a crowded nest if all 4 hatch and survive. Come on Maya and 33, you can do it!!

  4. Ann

    WOW, Kayleigh, thanks for the blog and what a surprise! Looks to be an interesting season and we know there are lots of fish at Rutland Water, so all should be well. Can’t wait to see them all later in the summer.

  5. Michael Tennant Grundy

    Absolutely brilliant ! I have watched this web site since it’s inseption.
    Will be glued from hereon !