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A livestreaming camera from an osprey nest in the Lochaber area has proven to be a lockdown hit across the UK and the world – quadrupling its audience since last year.
The camera feed from Woodland Trust’s Loch Arkaig Pine Forest has been running for four years thanks to support from players of People’s Postcode Lottery.
Three cute chicks have hatched and are delighting viewers around the world.
Here are Louis and Aila feeding the three little ones:
The first chick arrived on Friday May 29. The second on Monday June 1 and the third on Wednesday June 4.
In the early part of the season to mid May, the livestream has attracted some 160,000 viewers (that is viewers, not views), up more than 300 percent on this stage last year.
George Anderson of Woodland Trust Scotland told us: ‘The livestream has really found a special purpose this year, with so many people stuck indoors and hankering for some experience of the natural world. After the birds appeared on BBC Breakfast on Monday we saw 11,000 new web-watchers in one day. They have also featured on Channel 4 news a couple of times as an “and finally” and on BBC Springwatch.
BBC Breakfast dropped in live to the nest a few times on Monday and Wednesday……
‘The chicks are due to be measured and ringed in July, after which we will have some idea if they are male or female. There will then be some debate on what names to give them. Previous chicks from the nest are called Lachlan, Mallie and Rannoch,’ added George.
This year’s trio should take their first flight towards the end of July and by the end of August or beginning of September will migrate to West Africa.
Until then you can follow their adventures 24 hours a day on the live streaming webcam.
Contributors to the comments below the livestream have been keeping a running tally of the fish brought into the nest since the adults reunited at the nest on April 6.
As of Wednesday June 3:
Louis has brought in 140 fish comprising:
137 brown trout
1 silver tourist (sea trout or grilse)
1 flat fish (probably flounder)
Woodland Trust Scotland purchased Loch Arkaig Pine Forest in 2016 in partnership with local group Arkaig Community Forest.