Friday, 11 March 2011

Ospreys, Sine-Saloum Delta, Senegal

The Sine-Saloum delta is a vast area of mangroves, shallow sheltered bays and sandy islands in south-west Senegal and is an extremely important wintering site for ospreys. Our main aim was to visit a narrow sandy island situated about two hours boat ride from the fishing village of Missirah.
Nothing prepared us for the sight we got when we eventually reached the island at the mouth of the delta. Slowly drifting along the eastern side of the island it soon became clear why we had gone out there. Ospreys were perched side by side on washed up driftwood, adults and juveniles just a few meters apart, some eating, some preening. German and Scottish colour ringed birds were sitting together on the sand as others returned from the sea with fish. The extreme northern tip of the island contained 14 individuals on our second visit with many more in the surrounding areas.