The osprey is unique in that it migrates from western Africa to Scotland each spring and feeds mainly on fish. This unmistakable bird, a vision in black and white, surprised wildlife experts when it returned to breed in Scotland of its own accord in the 1950s after decades of apparent absence. Since then, the population has recovered and currently stands at around 200 pairs.
The Scottish Wildlife Trust reserve at Loch of the Lowes is home to a pair of breeding ospreys which nest just 150 metres from the observation hide, over the years the pair have become much loved local celebrities. A webcam overlooking the Osprey hide is watched by many, this is a great way to watch nature at its best especially when the chicks hatch!
Ospreys tend to arrive back at their nesting sites during April, just in time to lay their eggs, remaining here throughout the summer, returning south to their wintering grounds in August or September.
Look up to the skies above Highland Perthshire through the summer months and you may get a glimpse of these spectacular raptors gliding through the sky, you will then understand why they have captured the hearts of locals and are now a Scottish icon.
The powerful osprey can raise itself and a fish weighing as much as 2kg out of the water to its tree top nest. Ospreys only weigh about the same as a small chicken but have a very large wingspan, between 1.5m - 1.7m, and is adapted for living exclusively on fish.