The bad weather afflicting Northumberland doesn’t appear to have affected the breeding chances of the ospreys nesting Kielder Water & Forest Park; all three pairs now looking after eggs.
Despite the merciless onslaught of snow, hail, wind and rain over past few weeks, video footage on two of the nests (Nest 2& 3) have revealed both have a clutch of three eggs. This is particularly good news as one of these nests is playing host two a new pairing.
Experts watching the ospreys are also confident that the other nest, occupied by an experienced pair, (currently without a camera) has a similar sized clutch.
Last year, the ospreys had a successful season laying a total of 10 eggs and fledging six chicks. The success of this year will depend on how well the birds incubate the eggs during the current prolonged cold spell. At the moment, they appear to be sitting tight with minimal exposure of the eggs to the elements.
Joanna Dailey, Kielder Osprey expert volunteer, said: “It’s always a pleasure to see a full clutch of three eggs on a nest. With a new partnership on Nest 2 it was possible only two eggs would be produced. The ospreys are taking good care of their eggs in this challenging weather but we hope the suns comes out for the chicks hatching from late May.”
Visitors can watch the antics of the birds on nest 2 through a nest camera broadcasting at Kielder Castle café and Northumbrian Water’s Leaplish Waterside Park.
Fans of the famous birds can also keep up to date with them by checking the blog at kielderospreys.wordpress.com
The Osprey Watch is organised by Kielder Water & Forest Park Development Trust and Northumberland Wildlife Trust, with support from the RSPB. The partners are working hard to ensure that the ospreys are here to stay by maintaining a high quality habitat in Kielder Water & Forest Park and safeguarding and monitoring the nest site. To find out more, go to www.visitkielder.com
Kielder Castle Cafe is integrated in the ancient Kielder Castle, built in 1775 as a hunting lodge for the Duke of Northumberland. The cosy family run cafe serves locally sourced homemade food daily including breakfasts, lunches, snacks, soup and cakes.
Home to Northern Europe's biggest man made lake, the largest working forest in England, the darkest skies in England and voted Tourism Experience of the Year by Visit England, Kielder Water & Forest Park is the ideal destination for group travellers.
Kielder Castle Visitor Centre is open all year round, 10am to 5pm (11am opening for exhibition Now to March) . Kielder Castle is the visitor centre for Kielder Forest. Features include information centre, tearoom and exhibitions about forestry and conservation. Bike hire available.