As I left my first blog on something of a cliffhanger, I thought I’d better just update you on the last week.
The excellent (should that be “eggscellent”??) news is that we now have 3 eggs on the nest and both birds are taking their turn at incubating.
Unfortunately, we had a technical problem with the camera, brought on by the severe weather I mentioned last week, and we lost the picture from Tuesday to Friday, so we’re not exactly (“eggzactly”?? OK… I’ll stop now!) sure when the second and third eggs were laid. My best guess is the 25th and the 28th, based on the average gap between osprey eggs being laid of around 70 hours. Thanks to Jain from Techstar, Jedburgh, we now have a fully functioning camera system again and we are able to enjoy watching Samson and Delilah engaging in their “domestics” while they are carrying out incubation. It is very touching to see the care with which they move around the nest with their feet curled so as to not damage the eggs with their powerful talons. Samson seems a lot keener this year than last on doing his turn at incubation and Delilah sometimes has to exert her greater strength and size to move him off the eggs and persuade him to go and get her a fish! I’m sorry for the blurry picture but she was very insistent and was doing a great deal of wing flapping!
He has also been busy adding to the nest and brought a huge branch back on Sunday, although he seems unsure as to just where it can be seen to best effect.
Incubation will take between 37 and 42 days. Although the eggs were laid 3 days apart, the first 2 eggs were intentionally not incubated 24/7 by the parents, so the hatching dates should be considerably closer together. We are looking at the first egg hatching at about the 29th May, fingers crossed, so mark the date in your diary and check in here for further updates.