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Last Updated: Wednesday, 4 July 2007, 13:55 GMT 14:55 UK
Ospreys pass first health check
The young ospreys are expected to start flying in the near future
Two osprey chicks hatched in the Borders have come through their first health check in "tip-top condition".

There had been concerns that heavy downpours might affect the progress of the Tweed Valley birds.

The pair are constantly monitored by CCTV cameras at viewing centres in Glentress Forest and Kailzie Gardens.

Centre manager Diane Bennett said she was "really pleased" at how the young birds had developed since hatching a little over a month ago.

Forestry Commission Scotland rangers ringed the birds and carried out the health check.

Ms Bennett said she was delighted that they had both been found to be in excellent condition.

They are starting to stretch and exercise their wings so it won't be long until they take their first flight
Diane Bennett
Centre manager

"I'm really pleased that all this awful rainy weather hasn't affected our chicks," she said.

"They are now about a month old and have grown to around half the size of their parents.

"Unfortunately this means they are just too big for their mum to provide shelter under her wings when the downpours begin!"

She said viewers of the video link to the nest had been particularly impressed by the young birds at feeding time.

"The parents have done a marvellous job in feeding them and visitors to the centres have enjoyed watching the youngsters squabble over some huge fish," said Ms Bennett.

"A healthy appetite and regular supply of food has kept both the chicks in tip-top condition.

"They are starting to stretch and exercise their wings so it won't be long until they take their first flight."

'Fascinating birds'

The news of the birds' healthy condition has also been welcomed by Environment Minister Michael Russell.

"Ospreys are magnificent birds and it's great news that these chicks have passed their first health check," he said.

"The viewing centres in the Tweed Valley are very popular with visitors as they provide an amazing insight into the everyday lives of these fascinating birds.

"With better viewing access, more visitors are being attracted to the Tweed Valley and this has positive spin-offs for the local economy."

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04 Jun 07 |  South of Scotland
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11 Jul 06 |  South of Scotland
First chick lands in Tweed Valley
23 May 06 |  South of Scotland
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23 Apr 06 |  Scotland

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