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Last modified: 30 August 2012
Millionth visitor John Smallman (centre) at the viewpoint with Ella Dixon and John Fleet from the Lake District Osprey Project.
Image: The RSPB
When John Smallman called in at the Lake District Osprey Viewpoint he had no idea that he was about to become a VIP.
For John, who lives in Oldbury in the West Midlands, was the one millionth visitor to experience the famous Bassenthwaite ospreys in action.
To mark the occasion, he was presented with a framed print of an osprey and a goody bag including locally made fudge and a voucher for a cream tea at the Old Sawmill Tearoom in Dodd Wood.
Since opening in 2001, visitors have travelled from across the UK and beyond to experience the charismatic ospreys raise chicks in treetop nests and hunt for fish in the lake.
Nathan Fox of the Lake District Osprey Project said: “We were delighted to welcome John to the Viewpoint. All our visitors are very special, but we wanted to mark this wonderful milestone as a way of thanking everyone who has helped and supported the project over the past 12 years.”
At the Viewpoint, John saw the adult male and female in action but their sole offspring, Lucky 13, has already left the Lake District. This is quite unusual as it is normally the adult female that departs first. Fitted with a satellite tag, Lucky 13’s movements are being followed by the Lake District Osprey Project team. His last known location (recorded on 29 August) was the south coast between Eastbourne and Hastings.
Osprey fans can get the latest news about Lucky 13 and his parents at www.ospreywatch.co.uk, at www.facebook.com/ospreywatch, or by following on Twitter @LakesOspreys.
The Lake District Osprey Project is a partnership between the Forestry Commission, the RSPB and the Lake District National Park and runs until 2 September.
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