Building tension

Screen Shot 2013-03-15 at 08.42.39

A few people noticed yesterday lunchtime (Weds 13th) that the base of the nest platform was looking less than secure, and with the female scraping away at the gravel, the base dropped a little.  She was well and truly spooked, and shot off.  What to do?!  The platform was no longer safe to hold eggs and chicks if things get to those stages, as we hope they will, but the last thing we wanted to do was put the birds off using the site, after all the efforts to get to where we are.  After consulting with the RSPB, emergency repairs were expertly (and very swiftly) carried out, rendering the platform safe for occupancy again, but there was no sign of any birds for the rest of the afternoon.  An anxious night followed…

Huge relief all round when the birds visited the platform this morning, the male busily scratching away at the gravel and then shuffling down into the depression, apparently fashioning a nest scrape.  How amazing to be able to watch such behaviour in front of our eyes!  Last year we suspected the eggs were laid around the end of March or start of April, so the next fortnight should see increasing activity on and around the platform.  Keep the faith!

The above pic is a montage of the female excavating the nest site, taken by the Estates team.

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