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Bassenthwaite Lake

From Opus

Photo © by HelenBView of southern end of Bassenthwaite Lake from the Upper Viewpoint, May 2009.Click on image to see a larger version
Photo © by HelenB
View of southern end of Bassenthwaite Lake from the Upper Viewpoint, May 2009.
Click on image to see a larger version

England, Cumbria

Contents

[edit] Overview

Bassenthwaite Lake is a National Nature Reserve, in the Lake District, located in the county of Cumbria in northwest England. It is owned and managed by the Lake District National Park Authority. The area became famous in 2001, when a pair of wild Ospreys nested there, this being the first time in over 150 years that Ospreys had bred in the Lake District. Since then there have been breeding Ospreys every summer and hundreds of people have visited the viewpoints and visitor centre, to see these wonderful birds of prey.

Photo © by HelenBView of Bassenthwaite Lake looking from the lay-by on the B5292 up to Whinlatter Pass, April 2012. The Ospreys built a new nest in 2011, in the flat marshy area on the south side of the lake ~ the area on the middle right of the photo
Photo © by HelenB
View of Bassenthwaite Lake looking from the lay-by on the B5292 up to Whinlatter Pass, April 2012. The Ospreys built a new nest in 2011, in the flat marshy area on the south side of the lake ~ the area on the middle right of the photo

[edit] 2019 Ospreywatch News

  • The 2019 Ospreywatch season opens Monday, 1st April and will finish on Saturday, 31st August.
  • Unring, the male Osprey from the last few years, arrived back on April 1st. A female was observed on April 2nd, but it is not known if she is one of the females that was around last year.
  • Number 14, the satellite tagged male Osprey and son of Unring (hatched in 2013), has arrived in the South Lakes, after his long journey from the island of Bioko, south of Nigeria.
  • 29th April: Good news ~ a female Osprey appeared two weeks ago and has joined Unring at the nest. They have been seen mating over the last few days, so eggs are expected soon!
  • 15th May: From her behavior, the new female appears to be incubating eggs!
  • 13th June: The LDOP have announced that the eggs have hatched and there are 2 chicks.
  • 11th July: Apparently, there is only one chick, which is growing fast as there is no competition from siblings.

[edit] Birds

[edit] Notable Species

Osprey, Eurasian Marsh-Harrier (a pair nested successfully in the reed bed below the viewpoints in 2017), Red Kite (28 April, 2010), Barnacle Goose (These are most probably birds from a resident flock on nearby Derwentwater), Eurasian Oystercatcher, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Tawny Owl, Common Dipper, Common Redstart, European Pied Flycatcher, Eurasian Treecreeper.

Photo © by HelenBSouthern end of Bassenthwaite Lake from the Lower Viewpoint, May 09. In 2011, the Ospreys built a new nest in a marshy area there
Photo © by HelenB
Southern end of Bassenthwaite Lake from the Lower Viewpoint, May 09. In 2011, the Ospreys built a new nest in a marshy area there

[edit] Rarities

Red Kite ~ a total of 60 young Red Kites were released in Grizedale Forest, near Windermere, in the summers of 2010, 2011 and 2012. This is the 9th reintroduction and part of the final phase of Red Kite reintroductions in different parts of the UK. It is very likely that these wing-tagged kites will be seen over Bassenthwaite Lake as they explore the Lake District.

[edit] Check-list

Birds you can see here include:

Great Crested Grebe, Great Cormorant, Grey Heron, Mute Swan, Greylag Goose, Barnacle Goose, Eurasian Wigeon, Gadwall, Eurasian Teal, Mallard, Northern Pintail, Northern Shoveler, Common Pochard, Tufted Duck, Common Goldeneye, Red-breasted Merganser, Goosander, Osprey, Eurasian Marsh-Harrier, Eurasian Sparrowhawk, Common Buzzard, Common Kestrel, Common Pheasant, Water Rail, Common Moorhen, Common Coot, Eurasian Oystercatcher, Northern Lapwing, Common Snipe, Eurasian Curlew, Common Redshank, Common Sandpiper, Black-headed Gull, Common Gull, Herring Gull, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Common Woodpigeon, Common Cuckoo, Tawny Owl, Common Swift, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Sand Martin, Barn Swallow, Northern House Martin, Meadow Pipit, Pied Wagtail, Eurasian Wren, Dunnock, European Robin, Common Redstart, Eurasian Blackbird, Redwing, Song Thrush, Mistle Thrush, Eurasian Reed Warbler, Common Whitethroat, Blackcap, Wood Warbler, Common Chiffchaff, Willow Warbler, Goldcrest, European Pied Flycatcher, Spotted Flycatcher, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Coal Tit, Long-tailed Tit, Eurasian Nuthatch, Eurasian Treecreeper, Common Starling, Eurasian Jay, Eurasian Magpie, Eurasian Jackdaw, Common Raven, Carrion Crow, Rook, House Sparrow, Chaffinch, Eurasian Siskin, European Greenfinch, European Goldfinch, Eurasian Bullfinch, Lesser Redpoll, Common Crossbill

Photo © by HelenBWhinlatter Visitor Centre, located in Whinlatter Forest Park, on the  B5292, west of Bassenthwaite Lake, April 2012
Photo © by HelenB
Whinlatter Visitor Centre, located in Whinlatter Forest Park, on the B5292, west of Bassenthwaite Lake, April 2012

[edit] Other Wildlife

Red Squirrel, Badger, Roe Deer, Otter, Pipistrelle bat, Weasel, Stoat

[edit] Site Information

[edit] History and Use

In 2001 it was announced that a pair of Ospreys had nested in the woods above Bassenthwaite Lake. This was the first time in 150 years that a wild pair of the birds had bred in the Lake District. The Forestry Commission and the Lake District National Park Authority had provided a nesting platform in the hope that the Ospreys, they had been seeing during the summer for the last few years, would stay and breed there. Once the eggs were laid, wardens kept a 24 hour watch on the nest to protect the birds from any disturbance, such as illegal egg collecting. The RSPB is also involved in extra support for the Lake District Osprey Project.

Photo © by HelenBBassenthwaite Lake, looking across to Dodd Wood and Skiddaw, from Blackstock Point, July 2015
Photo © by HelenB
Bassenthwaite Lake, looking across to Dodd Wood and Skiddaw, from Blackstock Point, July 2015

[edit] Areas of Interest

  • Osprey viewing from Dodd Wood viewpoints
  • Whinlatter Visitor Centre in Whinlatter Forest Park, where there is a live video feed from the nest to a big screen. NB: Whinlatter is also a major mountain biking centre.
  • Forest walks, provided by the Forestry Commission, starting from the Dodd Wood car park.
  • Ivy Crag Wood - a small remnant of oak woodland on the slopes of Dodd below Skiddaw
  • Powterhow Wood, with a hide (blind), on the south west edge of Bassenthwaite Lake. Access from the car park at Powter How, via a nice walk through the woods, where you might see Pied and Spotted Flycatchers, Wood Warblers, and Great Spotted Woodpeckers. There's a tunnel under the A66, so no road crossings involved. Or you can park in the A66 layby at Blackstock Point, and take a walk along the lake side to get there. Location shown by arrow on map referenced in External Links, below.[2]
  • Dubwath Silver Meadows, a new wetland nature reserve about 17 acres in size, located at the north west end of Bassenthwaite Lake. 1.6 mile circuit of path and boardwalk, plus hides built in Celtic style.[3]

[edit] Access and Facilities

  • The viewpoints are open and staffed from early April to the end of August (Late Summer Bank Holiday). You may still visit the viewpoints outside of the Osprey season, for beautiful views of Bassenthwaite Lake and Derwentwater.
  • Osprey watching viewpoints are in Dodd Wood, on the east side of the lake. It is 3 miles north of Keswick off the A591, follow signposts to Dodd Wood from the A66. The car park is opposite the entrance to Mirehouse.
  • The Lower Viewpoint is open from 10am to 5pm daily and is staffed by volunteers. Excellent views of the Ospreys fishing over the lake. There are feeders out for the local birds, and Red Squirrels.
  • The Upper Viewpoint is open from 10.30am to 5pm daily. It is about half a mile, a 30 minutes walk, up a steep incline, to this higher viewpoint. There are telescopes for viewing the nest which is down on the marsh about a mile away.
  • There is no charge to use the viewpoints, but there is Pay & Display Parking at the car park by the Old Sawmill Tearoom. Please note that NO CHANGE IS GIVEN.
  • There are public toilets at the car park.
  • The Old Sawmill Tearoom at Dodd Wood is open through the Osprey season and beyond, closing at the end of October.
  • The Whinlatter Visitor Centre is located west of Braithwaite, on the B5292 between Braithwaite and Cockermouth - Grid Ref NY208245. It is open all year, and the Osprey Exhibition will be open from 10am until 5pm during the period that the ospreys are nesting. Parking charges are the same as Dodd Wood.

[edit] Contact Details

Whinlatter Visitor Centre phone: 017687 78469

[edit] Gallery

Click on images to see a larger version:

Content and images originally posted by HelenB

[edit] External Links

  1. LDOP Flickr album of Osprey and Bassenthwaite photos
  2. Location of hide near Powterhow Wood
  3. Dubwath Silver Meadows Wetland Nature Reserve plus Dubwath Silver Meadows map



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