In a nest at the top of an ancient Caledonian pine tree in the Highlands, a lovesick osprey is waiting patiently for his mate to arrive.
Nicknamed ‘Lonesome Louis’ by Woodland Trust Scotland staff, the bird is keeping a lonely vigil for his mate of over 10 years to show up.
The osprey nest is at Loch Arkaig Forest and a live video feed from the nest site revealed pour Louis’ plight.
Woodland Trust spokesman, George Anderson, said: “The female bird is late to arrive, but at the moment it is difficult to tell what could have happened to her. She may have found another mate or something could have happened on her journey back from Africa.
“It could be any one of a number of things, but ospreys are normally quite loyal and this pair have been together at the nest for the past 10 years.
“There are other osprey pairs in the district and they are all back and settling in to mate. Birds further south have laid eggs already, but poor Louis is still on his lonesome. It’s heartbreaking. He’s made a start putting some moss and grass in the nest and fought off some crows, but most of the time he is just looking out for his mate.”
Mr Anderson said that staff don’t normally give the birds which nest in the forest a name.
“We felt so sorry for this one when we saw him in the nest cam pictures that we just had to call him Lonesome Louis. He’s been at the nest since April 10, but we’ll give the female a little while longer to show up. I don’t know who is more worried – him or us.”
Loch Arkaig Forest was bought by Woodland Trust Scotland in December along with local group, Arkaig Community Forest.
Ospreys became extinct in this country 100 years ago and it is believed Loch Arkaig may have been the final nest location before the birds began to recolonise the country again in the 1950s.
There are thought to be about 200 breeding pairs in Scotland now, but at the moment it is 199 until Louis’ mate turns up at Loch Arkaig!
To see the nest live, log on to www.woodlandtrust.org.uk