Loch Arkaig osprey cam
Watch a round up of the 2020 season from our live osprey nest cam, set deep in the heart of an ancient Caledonian pine forest.
Since 2017 players of People's Postcode Lottery have been supporting live streaming osprey cameras at the Woodland Trust's Loch Arkaig Pine Forest in the Scottish Highlands. It's been a great success.
But in 2020 something extraordinary happened. During the pandemic lockdown the ospreys were just the dose of nature people needed in their lives. The camera audience soared from 60,000 to nearly 400,000.
Ospreys Louis and Aila arrived back at Loch Arkaig in April and three eggs were laid later in the month. Three little puffball chicks hatched by the start of June.
In just over a few weeks the chicks have put on an amazing growth spurt and look like junior dinosaurs. Earlier in July the trio were ringed and we were able to get a closer look at them. The chicks were estimated to be two males and a female: Doddie, Vera and Captain.
The three young ospreys exercise their wing muscles and practice rising above the nest. By late July the young birds take their first flights. Here's Doddie taking to the skies. Look at him go!
Here's a lovely late summer moment as all three chicks enjoy the evening sun.
Throughout August the family began to leave Loch Arkaig one at a time to make their way south.
Just look at some of these responses from viewers of the camera:
Sharon Mcgrath - This site has got me through lockdown and I have fallen in love with these beautiful birds.
David Haw - In this incredibly trying year it has been one break in the clouds.
Pauline Brown - I play the Postcode Lottery and am proud that we are supporting this incredible cause. Wouldn't have it any other way!
Lindsay Smith - You've kept me sane during lockdown.
Andrea Hargreaves - Thank you to the Woodland Trust for their important work and to the People's Postcode Lottery. I have loved every minute!
Victoria - Watching the three chicks develop from eggs to beautiful fledglings has kept me sane throughout all this.
Gilly Robinson - Watching this nest during this pandemic has given me such enormous pleasure and has been a breath of fresh air - a chance to get away (if only in my mind) from the stresses and anxieties of everyday life in lockdown.
It really does mean a lot to people this year.
What a summer it has been. Many thanks to all of the Woodland Trust staff and volunteers who made the Arkaig osprey livestream such a success. And everyone watching and commenting too. And of course thank you to the players of People's Postcode Lottery for making all this possible.
The birds have migrated to West Africa for winter, lucky for them, but we hope to see Louis and Aila again next year raising more chicks. Come back in spring 2021 to check this out. Get a little slice of the wild Highlands wherever you are.
Our experts are working to restore Loch Arkaig Pine Forest - our ospreys' home - for wildlife and visitors. But we can't do it without your support.
The story so far
Our live nest camera, supported by players of People's Postcode Lottery, has been streaming footage of breeding ospreys from Loch Arkaig Pine Forest since 2017.
Our resident pair Louis and Aila returned to the nest in April 2020. Aila laid three eggs in May, and all three resulting chicks - Doddie, Vera and Captain - successfully fledged.
The camera will be live again in spring 2021 to bring you a wild slice of forest life from the Scottish Highlands. We hope to see Louis and Aila back in April for another successful breeding season.
More on ospreys and Loch Arkaig
Arkaig ospreys: Behind the scenes of a nest camera in the Scottish Highlands
No wi-fi, no plug sockets, no film crew. Meet the people behind the camera and explore the set of the UK's most remote family drama.Discover how it's done
Trees woods and wildlife
Arkaig ospreys: your questions answered
We answer your questions about our resident Loch Arkaig osprey pair, the nest camera and their forest home.
Woodland Walks podcast with Adam Shaw - Loch Arkaig
How to tell male and female ospreys apart
A Woodland Trust Wood
Loch Arkaig Pine Forest