Page last updated at 09:20 GMT, Monday, 20 April 2009 10:20 UK

Second osprey pair start to nest

The osprey and the nest
The osprey - before his mate arrived - at Montgomeryshire Wildlife Trust's Cors Dyfi reserve

A male osprey who set up home on a 50ft (15.2m) tall man-made nest in Powys has found a mate, making them only the second breeding pair in Wales.

The birds of prey are nesting at Cors Dyfi reserve, run by Montgomeryshire Wildlife Trust (MWT), near Machynlleth.

Within two hours of meeting on Saturday afternoon the ospreys were mating.

Built on top of a telegraph pole, the nest has been dotted with white paint to resemble bird droppings, which experts said made it more authentic.

The male arrived at the nest on Good Friday, raising hopes Wales could soon have its second breeding pair.

They are thought to be the same birds who visited the nest briefly last year, but failed to produce eggs.

This is a significant milestone in the fortunes of Welsh birds of prey

Emyr Evans, Dyfi Osprey Project

Hundreds of visitors have already seen the Powys pair from a brand new hide built as part of the Dyfi Osprey Project.

Project manager Emyr Evans said: "This is a significant milestone in the fortunes of Welsh birds of prey.

"The osprey was hunted to extinction in the UK and after centuries of persecution only returned to breed in remote parts of Scotland in the 1950s.

"Wales has some fantastic osprey habitat and now with two pairs breeding, it is hoped that the population will grow and that in years to come there will be ospreys breeding in every county in Wales."

Two ospreys, the only known nesting pair in Wales, returned to Gwynedd and produced their first egg of the season three weeks ago.

It is the fifth year running that the ospreys have flown in from Africa to raise chicks in the Glaslyn Valley near Porthmadog.

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