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This large raptor also known as a sea hawk and a fish hawk is a diurnal fish eating stunningly beautiful bird of prey. They arrive in the uk in March and April after spending the winter in Africa.
This amber listed bird suffered from illegal killing
(and still does)
After low breeding numbers it is making a remarkable comeback and thrives in the highlands.
See above links to live webcams.
They have white underparts and dark upper parts and amazing wings angled and designed to bend at the “wrist”to enable it to lift off from the water once its talons has gripped a fish.
Many have drowned due to the weight of their prey and the fish diving, pulling a weak osprey under to drown.
Only the fittest survive.
Watch the stunning slow motion video below
They are approximately 52 to 60cm in length
They have a wingspan of 145 to 170cm
They weigh in at between 1.2 to 2kg.
There are only 200 to 250 breeding pairs in the uk.
Their nest is called an eyrie and is built at the very top of a tree. It is between 120 and 150cm across
The female lays 2 or 3 eggs at intervals of 1 to 3 days and then incubates them for 37 days each.
The nesting duties are shared but the male does most of the fishing. Many young birds die before the age of three and those that survive live on average around 8 years.
The oldest recorded Osprey was 32
They return to the same nest every year usually with the same partner