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Last Updated: Wednesday, 20 April, 2005, 14:59 GMT 15:59 UK
Joy as first osprey egg is laid
Bassenthwaite ospreys
It is hoped more eggs will be laid
An egg has been laid in the Lake District ospreys' nest just a few weeks after the birds returned to the area.

The Lake District Osprey Project announced the egg was laid just before midday on Wednesday.

The moment was witnessed by nest protection officers, who watched via CCTV pictures relayed from the nest.

The pair of ospreys have used the nest in Wythop Wood, overlooking Bassenthwaite Lake, since 2001 and have brought up five chicks.

The nest was completely rebuilt in March after it was destroyed in winter gales.

There was also a brief drama earlier this month when another male osprey appeared, but the original pair soon got back together.

'Dramatic start'

Bill Kenmir, from the Project, said: "We are absolutely cock-a-hoop at the news that the first egg has been laid today.

"With the destruction of the nest and the unexpected arrival of the intruding male, it has certainly been a dramatic start to this year's nesting season for the ospreys, and an anxious time for the project team."

It is hoped more eggs will be laid in the coming days, as the birds normally lay a clutch of three eggs. Incubation is carried out mainly by the female and takes between 34 and 40 days.

A public viewpoint is open at the Forestry Commission's Dodd Wood, near Keswick, where telescopes are set up during the day for visitors to watch the ospreys.

Pictures from the nest are screened on a giant screen at the Whinlatter Visitor Centre, near Braithwaite.

Feathered rival leaves love nest
08 Apr 05 |  Cumbria


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