Springwatch, Tourism and Ospreys

By | Category: Travel news

UPDATE: 30 July 2011. Two days ago the first of the three ospreys, the one called Einion fledged and made the first flight, albeit one of 40 seconds. Now the other two are flying as well, the last – Dulas- having flown at 08.42 yesterday. The birds have been ringed and will be tracked for up to five years.
The birth of some new chicks isn’t often news. The birth of two ospreys is not uncommon. That they were born in mid-Wales where none have bred for 407 years is news. At any other time this would be fascinating for bird watchers who make up an ever growing number. That it coincides with BBC’s Springwatch programme filming at Ynys Hir means that the chicks will be TV stars. It also means that there will be more of us will be visiting the area to see the countryside for ourselves.
And this flows on from a bumper number of visitors that went to mid Wales last year. Remember last year at this time? Volcanic ash caused travel difficulties so many of us stayed to enjoy our countryside. Staycations which had thought to be a one year wonder in 2009 continued to be popular last year. But this year looks to be good as well. Mid Wales Tourism, an organisation made up of 600 local businesses, says that online accommodation bookings for the first four months of the year are nearly double. Even allowing for the fact that more of us book online, this is still a high increase after such a good year last year.
Now that two of the ospreys have hatched, (the third is apparently hatching as I write to great surprise from some experts who thought it had been left too long.) visitor increase will rise even further just to Yys Hir, let alone Mid Wales. On the Springwatch website, one message says that the number of cars (just after the birth of the first chick) in the car park was greater than usual. 15,000 people have already visited this year. The next 15,000 will be there soon as well after the hatching of the three. And with the greater publicity that Springwatch will give to this third chick and the rest of the brood, Ynys Hir and mid-Wales generally, it wouldn’t surprise anyone if more visitors came this year.
The Dyfi Osprey Project is open until September 12th from 10am-6pm.

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