Page last updated at 23:34 GMT, Tuesday, 29 July 2008 00:34 UK

Welsh osprey traced in Scotland

Welsh osprey's ID tag
The bird was identified thanks to a photograph of its tag

A missing chick from the only known nesting pair of ospreys in Wales has been traced in south west Scotland.

Experts had feared the bird - born in 2006 as part of the Glaslyn Osprey Project - might have been dead.

However, a sharp-eyed ranger in Dumfries and Galloway spotted a bird with an unusual identity ring fishing at Loch Ken last week.

Further investigation confirmed that the osprey was a two-year-old male originally from north Wales.

Osprey Project Officer for RSPB Cymru Emyr Evans said it was "fabulous news".

When starting a family, ospreys often return to the area they were raised in, so we might have expected to see this youngster back in the Glaslyn rather than up in Scotland
Emyr Evans
RSPB Cymru

"The mortality rate for these birds in their first years is incredibly high, so to know this Welsh osprey is healthy and back in the UK is extremely heart-warming news," he said.

The young bird was spotted by Dumfries and Galloway Council ranger Keith Kirk.

He took a photograph which clearly showed the ID ring on the bird.

It was subsequently identified as a Glaslyn osprey.

Mr Evans said it was something of a surprise to find the Welsh chick had moved north.

Doing well

"When starting a family, ospreys often return to the area they were raised in, so we might have expected to see this youngster back in the Glaslyn rather than up in Scotland," he said.

"However, at only two years old, he is still a little young to breed and may still return to Wales for nesting in years to come.

"Wherever he ends up, we are thrilled to see him doing so well."

The Glaslyn ospreys have now successfully raised nine chicks since first nesting in north Wales in 2004.

The current family, two parent birds and three youngsters, can be seen from a viewing point at Pont Croesor near Porthmadog.


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