We were delighted to be asked again to help transport osprey chicks in a project to re-establish ospreys in Spain.
The project, put together by the RSPB in conjunction with their counterparts in Spain, involves transporting young birds from the Scottish Highlands to Denia.
Osprey experts sourced birds from this year’s chicks based on criteria such as the strength of the individual birds, and their capability to pair and settle down to help establish the population in Spain.
The journey started at midnight on day one, as Courier Huw and Pedro, an osprey expert from Spain, loaded up the birds and drove through the night to the Cotswold Wildlife Park. There, a Government vet was waiting to issue the birds with their export clearances, do their health checks, and complete their CITES certificates.
Once the checks and paperwork were complete, Huw and Pedro drove the birds to London’s Heathrow airport for their departure on Iberia to Madrid.
Chicks were taken from nests only where there was more than one baby, and the babies were closely monitored before selection for this important journey
The birds originate from the picturesque Scottish Highlands…
…with its endless green vistas…
…and beautiful lochs
We prepared travel boxes that gave the birds — travelling in pairs — security and comfort
The birds’ arrival at Madrid airport’s animal reception area
Osprey experts were on hand to check the birds were all OK after their flight
One of the experts, Dave, set about feeding the chicks as quickly as possible
The ospreys’ new home is a national park in Denia, where they will be watched over and protected by experts who work in and around the park