Ospreys proud parents of three (maybe four)

First osprey chick in Scotland hatched in Tweed valley. A surprise visitor for chick
First osprey chick in Scotland hatched in Tweed valley. A surprise visitor for chick

A TWEED Valley chick was the first osprey to hatch in Scotland this year, writes Sally Gillespie.

It popped into view in the nest of its Tweed Valley parents last Wednesday and as of yesterday, it had been joined by a further two.

Osprey information officer Diane Bennett said: “This is great news for the Tweed Valley Osprey Project and for ospreys across Scotland.

“The adults are old hands when it comes to rearing chicks ... this will be their ninth brood to date.”

Signs that the chick’s arrival was imminent were clear when the adult birds became twitchy and restless.

Then volunteers spotted the youngster last Wednesday morning.

Ms Bennett continued: “A fourth egg still remains in the nest.

“Volunteers at the centres remain hopeful that this will hatch, however four chicks in one nest would be an extremely rare occurrence.”

The first egg was laid around April 9 and a second one soon after.

Ms Bennett said: “The male osprey has now had to double his efforts to make sure he catches the largest fish possible to feed his brood!”

The osprey family can be viewed on high definition cameras at Forestry Commission Scotland’s Glentress Forest and at Kailzie Gardens. But, so far, the birds have eluded the stills camera. Volunteers are hopeful, though, and will post any photographs they manage to snap on Forestry Commission Scotland’s Facebook page.

The chicks will be ringed as part of the Tweed Valley Osprey Project so their movements can be monitored over their lifetimes.

The project is a partnership between Forestry Commission Scotland, Kailzie Gardens and RSPB Scotland.