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Last Updated: Tuesday, 26 June 2007, 14:58 GMT 15:58 UK
Chicks confound weather worries
Female osprey feeding chicks
Images from the nest are beamed onto a giant screen at Whinlatter
Cumbria's three newly-hatched osprey chicks are thriving despite heavy rain and high winds at their Lakeland nest.

They hatched at the Bassenthwaite Lake nest, where male osprey Fish King found a new mate after his long-term female, GreenXS, failed to return from Africa.

There had been fears that the chicks could be threatened by the bad weather and the possible return of GreenXS.

But they are growing fast and should be ready to leave the nest in July, said a Lake District Osprey Project spokesman.

The female has been brooding quite hard and all the chicks are healthy and can stand and walk around
Nathan Fox, Lake District Osprey Project

The first two chicks hatched during the same night on 9 June, which experts say is unusual as there is normally a gap of at least a day.

The third chick was spotted in the nest the following week.

Project spokesman Nathan Fox said: "The weather has been pretty atrocious. We had been quite worried but we know all three chicks are thriving and plenty of food is being brought in by Fish King.

"The female has been brooding quite hard and all the chicks are healthy and can stand and walk around.

Nest camera

"If all goes well they should be leaving the nest about mid-July as they usually fledge after about seven or eight weeks."

Nearly 500,000 people have visited the viewpoints overlooking Bassenthwaite and the giant screen at Whinlatter Forest Visitor Centre, which displays images from the nest camera.

It is estimated that the ospreys boost the local economy by up to 2m every year.

The project is a partnership between the Forestry Commission and the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds with the support of the Lake District National Park Authority.

Third chick for Lakeland ospreys
13 Jun 07 |  Cumbria
Double hatching for osprey pair
09 Jun 07 |  Cumbria
First egg for new osprey couple
01 May 07 |  Cumbria
More love rivalry at osprey nest
20 Apr 07 |  Cumbria

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