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Last Updated: Friday, 13 June, 2003, 18:11 GMT 19:11 UK
Osprey chicks born in Rutland
two ospreys
The breeding pair have at least one chick in their nest
Birdwatchers believe that several osprey chicks have hatched in a nest in Rutland Water in Rutland.

Only a few of the chicks have been born in the country since 2001, when the first one since 1842 arrived at Rutland Water.

Dr Stephen Bolt of the Osprey Project says he is not sure how many chicks are in the nest, as it is impossible to see them clearly.

The parent ospreys have been seen tearing off small strips of fish and feeding the chicks, so it is clear that some chicks are in the nest, he said.

Viable colony

An osprey called Aqua, who was born in June 2001, has been seen flying around Rutland Water.

The idea is to get a viable colony of ospreys in the Rutland region
Dr Stephen Bolt
Osprey Project

His father has returned to the same nest at Rutland Water to start another family with a new mate this year, Dr Bolt said.

"We hope to have between one and three chicks," he said.

"It will be 10 days before the chicks poke their heads above the nest.

"The idea is to get a viable colony of ospreys in the Rutland region."

The breeding ospreys were transferred to Rutland Water from Scotland in 2001 and hand-reared by bird specialists.

Chicks have also been hatched in a nest in woodland above Bassenthwaite Lake, near Keswick for the third successive year.

More than 30,000 visitors have travelled to special lakeside viewing points near Keswick to watch the birds since they returned to the nest in April.

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