Page last updated at 07:19 GMT, Friday, 17 April 2009 08:19 UK

First egg spotted in Osprey nest

Osprey landing at Bassenthwaite
The birds attract thousands of visitors to Bassenthwaite each year

An egg has been spotted in the nest of Cumbria's ospreys, two weeks after they returned to Lake Bassenthwaite.

When the male, known as "No Ring", first arrived at the site in 2001, he became the first osprey to nest in the Lake District in more than 150 years.

Since then he has fathered 16 chicks with his previous mate and the current female, who he paired up with in 2007.

The Lake District Osprey Project, which protects the birds, said the egg was laid on Thursday afternoon.

Spokesman Pete Barron said: "Everyone involved in the project is very "eggcited" that the female has laid her first egg.

"Staff, volunteers and visitors will now be watching the nest for signs of more eggs."

Volunteers will run a 24-hour nest guard, in what is hoped will be the ninth successful breeding season.

The ospreys attract thousands of people to the area each year, providing a boost to the Lake District's economy.

Visitors to Bassenthwaite can watch the birds through high-powered telescopes at the Dodd Wood viewpoint, overlooking the lake.

Live images from the nest are also beamed to a big screen at the nearby Whinlatter visitor centre.

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