Turns out blue HJ is a very young male bird. He was ringed at Caerlaverock in 2010 as a chick, so he is only 2 years old. Most ospreys don't return to the UK until they are 3 years old, but they have been known to return early to look for mates and suitable nest sites. So HJ is clearly hoping to get ahead of the game.
HJ's mother was unringed but his father was green AW, one of Wigtown Bay's chicks from our female HD and original male BS, hatched and ringed in 2004. So looks like HD's grandson has returned to the nest. Sadly, green AW has not been seen this year back at the Caerlaverock nest, so it's great to see one of his offspring, looking fit and healthy, back in the area. Both HJ and EP have been visiting the nest today. No doubt EP thought his luck was in when a new bird showed up in the area. With 2 males about, maybe we'll have 2 nests next year? Hey, I can but hope!!
After the excitment of last Tuesday, we have not seen any sign of HJ or indeed EP visiting the nest. The local ravens have been regularly hanging about the nest, and have taken to removing all the twigs that were brought in by the ospreys last week. We'll just have to keep our fingers crossed for next year and hope that one of the males returns to the nest.
After an absense of about a week, the peregrine falcon has made an appearance again today. Happily sitting in the sunshine on the Tower for Remarkable Raptors day. At high tide, a large flock of about 200 curlew wheeled over the merse edge and are now happily munching on the exposed mud.
Well Friday night and Saturday morning proved most worth while lots of Pipistrelle bats and some interesting moths the cold weather did not help the flight of moths and should imagine that the bats did not do as well as they might in this unseasonal weather. Actually saw bats in day light on the way home at 4:30am after closing down the moth trap.
The eleven visitors that came along for our walk on Friday night identified the three moths we caught as from top to bottom a Small Angle Shades, Six Strip Rustic and a Sallow Kitten.
On Saturday Morning five visitors arrived to see what we had caught and help identify them. We had one to identify from the previous night and three from the moth trap, these were from top to bottom a Marbled Beauty on the Friday a Plain Golden Y, Common Wainscot, and a Flame Shoulder over night.
Although we did not catch a huge number of moths the experience of identifying the moths and learning about their season of flight and food plants of the larva was very interesting.
The Crook of Baldoon will be trying to do three of these events in 2013 in late spring, mid season and early autumn.
Every one huddled round to identify the moths.
Alexa helping to identify one of the moths
latest figures from the BTO Breeding Bird Survey (BBS) show that four of our breeding waders have reached their lowest levels since the survey started in the early 1990s.
declines of 19% for Oystercatcher, 18% for Lapwing, 40% for Snipe and 13% for Curlew.
Another bird that has recorded major decline in recent years is the farmland bird the Skylark, with a significant 7% decline between 2010 and 2011 , and since the BBS started in 1994 a 20% decline.
I feel that these figures reflect some of my recording for WeBs counts this year as well. It is without a doubt weather related this year.
Talking to Hannah at the Mull of Galloway today the Guillemots and Razorbills have done badly this year again but the Kittiwakes have so far done a lot better.
EP our male from previous years, that has been hanging about in the area has just turned up on the nest. HJ didn't seem upset by this, so maybe he's a she?? A raven is flying around too. All go today!!