For some weeks now The Post have been running regular updates on the welfare of Mr O.
Mr O has been in my care for about 4 weeks now, and came in unable to feed, dehydrated and really knocking on death’s door.
I treated him for bacterial and fungal infections – birds can pick these up from dead fish, contaminated food or contaminated water.
He started to eat, fish are his favourite (herring to be specific – he is a fussy bird), and he eats about 4 to 6 of them a day. As he has been eating his health has been improving and his fitness has increased. He has been getting pretty comfortable in the aviary, I do get him out exercising and working, don’t want him getting too comfortable and not wanting to go back to the hard work of a grumpy wife and three demanding kids to feed.
All going well he’ll be released this Friday. Just in time for him to do his Christmas shopping. Mrs O is likely to give him a clout around the ears for disappearing without a valid explanation. Then he’ll be welcomed back to the family and introduced to the three young ones in the nest.
I wasn’t joking about giving him a clout. With birds of prey it is not uncommon for the partners to show emotion. She will be telling him off because she was pining for him, and be relieved that he has returned. Not unlike humans really.
Here is an extract from Bret Christian’s article in The Post on 4th December 2010:
“Mrs O, the Claremont osprey, was busily fishing for her young family this week while her husband was making a rapid recovery in a faraway cage. Mr O fell ill and fell out of the nest high atop a Norfolk Island pine tree in mid-November (POST, 20/11). Yvonne Sitko, who is nursing the sick bird, said he was well on the way to recovery, now flying around his cage for a distance of 10m before settling on his perch. He has responded to drugs, recovering from the double dose of both fungal and bacterial infection.”