Success story for injured osprey

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A two year old injured osprey from the Borders has been successfully nursed back to health and released into the wild.

The osprey was originally found in the Yarrow Valley and had been entangled in pond netting but had managed to free itself.

It was exhausted and wouldn’t fly, even after being kept overnight for two days by Diane Bennett of the Tweed Valley Osprey Project.

She said:

“I had to force feed the osprey to keep his energy levels up and to prevent dehydration but he still wouldn’t fly, so I took him to the South of Scotland Barony Wildlife Hospital in Dumfriesshire for rest and recouperation.”

As the osprey was ringed, it was possible to trace the bird back to the Tweed Valley project. The bird will have migrated over to Africa and this would have been his first trip back into Scotland. 

The osprey spent two weeks in the care of Tricia Smith from the Barony Wildlife Hospital. After the all clear was given, Tony Lightley, wildlife manager with Forestry Commission Scotland, along with  Tricia, undertook some test flights with the bird. 

Tony said:

“We needed to check whether he was strong enough to make it on his own. We eventually brought him back to the nest site where he was raised and waited with baited breath as he was released. He sat there for a few moments and then took off. It was a great sight to see.”

Both Diane and Tony hope the osprey makes it over to Africa safely and returns home again next year.

The Tweed Valley Osprey Project, a partnership between Forestry Commission Scotland, Kailzie Gardens and RSPB Scotland, has helped safeguard ospreys and allowed the public to enjoy them through two viewing centres at Glentress and Kailzie Gardens.

Notes to News editors

1.  Forestry Commission Scotland works as the Scottish Government’s forestry directorate

2.  The release of the osprey can be seen on the Tweed Valley Osprey Blog:

3.  Media enquiries to Diane Bennett on  0790 809 8026 or Steve Williams, Forestry Commission Scotland press office 0131 314 6508.