Latest News - Holker Hall

Ospreys return to Nature Reserve at Holker Estate

A pair of Ospreys have once again returned to Natural England’s Roudsea Wood and Mosses National Nature Reserve on the Holker Estate.

The Ospreys were first seen on the site in 2013 but it was not until the following year, after the construction of a purpose-built nesting platform, that the pair adopted the platform and began to build their nest. They reared two chicks successfully in 2014 returning in 2015 and 2016. 

This year, the male bird returned on 27th March and quickly restored possession of the nest, successfully seeing off an intruder male before welcoming back the female bird to the nest on 2nd April.  Is it anticipated that the birds will spend the next two weeks rebuilding the nest structure before laying up to three eggs. Hopefully these will hatch in early June and the chicks will take their first flight in mid-July.

Whilst the female bird will spend nearly all her time on the nest, the male will be hunting for fish in the nearby Leven Estuary. These birds thrive on a diet of grey mullet and flat fish hauled from the tidal channels of the sea.

The Roudsea male bird was ringed as a chick in North Wales in 2008 to help track his movements and support conservation efforts.  Chicks produced in the Roudsea nest this year will also be carefully ringed in early July and hopefully they will be recognisable when they eventually return to breed in England after three years in Africa.

Visitors are welcome at the Reserve to view the Osprey nest from the viewing point on the bog boardwalk but they must request a free visiting permit in advance from the Senior Reserves Manager, Rob Petley-Jones via email rob.petley-jones@naturalengland.org.uk.

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