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Last Updated: Wednesday, 16 April, 2003, 09:08 GMT 10:08 UK
Anxious wait for Mrs Osprey
Osprey
A male osprey has already arrived at Bassenthwaite
Birdwatchers are waiting to see if a female osprey returns to the Lake District.

A male bird has been heard near Bassenthwaite lake and it is hoped his mate will arrive shortly.

A year ago the rare pair nested close to the lake, and attracted more than 105,000 visitors.

The expected arrival of the nesting pair coincides with the construction of a new 400,000 visitor centre at nearby Whinlatter.

Bill Kenmir, of the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB), said: "She turned up last year on 18 April and the year before on 17 April, so we're hopeful she will be here too.

"The male has secured the area around the lake and is now just waiting for his mate to appear."

Lord Clark of Windermere, who is also chair of the Forestry Commission hopes the new centre will add to the whole experience.

He said: "Each bird that nests here is worth 1m to the local economy.

"We want to draw people here and let them enjoy what we have to offer here, more than just the ospreys."

Forestry Commission spokesman Graeme Prest, said he hoped the ospreys would continue to be a tourist draw for the area.

In 2002, hundreds of people were on hand to see a pair of osprey chicks fly their Cumbrian nest.




SEE ALSO:
Twin chicks for osprey pair
20 Jun 02  |  England
Bird-watching Big Brother style
04 Apr 02  |  England
Rare osprey photo call
23 Jul 01  |  Science/Nature


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