Page last updated at 14:10 GMT, Wednesday, 1 October 2008 15:10 UK

Tagged osprey overshoots islands

Two osprey chicks (Pic: RSPB Scotland)
The young birds were raised by their parents at Loch Garten

One of two ospreys raised in a nest in the Highlands is believed to have died while migrating from Scotland.

RSPB Scotland have been tracking Deshar and his sister Nethy, which were fitted with satellite tags at Loch Garten near Aviemore.

Deshar's transmitter shows "zero speed and negative altitude" in the Atlantic after missing landfall in the Azores.

Site manager Richard Thaxton said: "We're very sad to have lost Deshar, we are gutted."

Nethy was thought to be doing fine, making gradual steps south towards West Africa. The bird has so far been tracked to France.

He missed the islands and continued on out into mid-Atlantic and he eventually just ran out of fuel
Richard Thaxton
RSPB Scotland

In September, a young, tagged osprey which became lost on its way to Africa was found dead on Lewis on the Western Isles.

The bird, which was born in Forres, Moray, in June, was tracked by satellite as it zig-zagged in the wrong direction across Scotland.

The male should have been heading to Western Africa for the winter.

The tag later indicated the osprey had not moved for several hours and the bird was found in a road ditch. It was believed to have been hit by a car.

Over the summer, Loch Garten's young ospreys drew more than 200,000 visitors to a dedicated website that followed their story from hatch to flap of wings on their first flights.

Mr Thaxton said "As newly fledged birds, they venture out into the unknown, they have to contend with harsh weather and disorientation and this shows how easily things can go wrong for them.

"Deshar appears to have flown nigh-on 2,000 miles non-stop as he desperately tried to find landfall.

"The satellite data showed, unknown to him of course, that he was heading for the Azores, but he missed the islands and continued on out into mid-Atlantic and he eventually just ran out of fuel."

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09 Sep 08 |  Highlands and Islands
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