Wednesday, 4 September 2013

Chelmarsh - Osprey!

This is one bird I was convinced would elude me for 2013 in Shropshire. Many hours looking skyward at VP had proved futile but a chance call at Chelmarsh produced this juvenile Osprey.

I sensed there may have been a chance as Tony C had logged a sighting for the previous day, commenting that the Osprey took ten attempts to catch a fish - that's youngsters for you! I had a scan from the causeway then got my scope and started checking out the margins for waders (nothing). I then started to count Great-crested Grebes (how sad is that) and I'd got to 27 when an unmistakable bird in flight caught my eye in the field of view!! I looked up (nothing) I had no idea where it had gone either and started to doubt whether I had actually seen an.......

A minute or so later, I spotted a white patch in a distant birch tree and scoped it - yesssssss I had been right - Osprey still present! It plunged for a fish (missed) and then flew a bit nearer to me - at least I could get some record shots?

Now this is where it gets both interesting and frustrating - it's wearing a blue ring on the left leg so must be a Scottish bird. However..... it can't be read conclusively (see comments at bottom of post!)

I watched it dive several times without success which was brilliant (for me) as I got more chances!

Unsuccessful plunges meant more opportunities for flight :-)

Despite the distance and record shot nature of all of these - this is my favourite :-)

I sent the best of the ring images to Roy Dennis with guesses re the lettering (I daresay there will be plenty of theories out there HR 3 or 1 KR... etc) to see if that would tally with known ringing data. And yes, I've tweaked / sharpened images to no avail, friends have had a go too! It's all inconclusive and sadly frustrating guesswork. He is absolutely correct in saying we can only assign a sighting on a 100% ring identity......

One that got away? but the fish didn't at about the 10th attempt again (a distant montage).....

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