Bassenthwaite Lake and the Ospreys

Bassenthwaite Lake is the only actual lake in the lake District, the others are meres or waters. It is a very special lake providing a home for a wide variety of wildlife and especially for the Ice Age vendace fish and the world famous Ospreys.

Between April and August the Ospreys put on their annual aerial display between Whinlatter and Bassenthwaite. They have an impressive five feet wingspan - if they're flying about you can't miss them. They first nested beside Bassenthwaite in 2001 - the first wild osprey to breed in the Lake District for 150 years.

Once the breeding pair lay their eggs, wardens keep a round the clock watch on the nest to prevent thieves stealing the eggs. Ospreys usally lay three eggs which take about six weeks to hatch. The young stay in the nest for six or seven weeks. In late summer the female will migrate south leaving the male to teach the youngsters the art of fishing. One year they kept the rangers on their toes by moving out of the tree top nest they have used for years to a brand new one down by their favourite river.

Please note that the osprey viewpoints at Forestry England Dodd Wood (what3words ///nozzles.renovated.pint) are currently unmanned. Visitors are welcome to explore the forest, but we advise you to bring your own optics if you wish to fully enjoy the wide range of wildlife which call the area home.

Following the successful natural recolonisation of ospreys to the area in 2001, the Bassenthwaite Osprey Project has monitored this magnificent species, sharing news and updates with enthusiasts worldwide. Whilst a mating pair has returned to the area for the 2022 season they have nested on private land. Dodd Wood is located about 3 miles North of Keswick off the A591. Car Park facilities include toilets and a tearoom.

Over the course of most days during the breeding season the Ospreys can be seen fishing, sitting, feeding, flying and watching.

Follow the latest news on Ospreywatch.