Saturday, 25 October 2008

Released back out into the wild

The red kite in rehabilitation was soon back on wing so was released back out into the wild.. I'd intended to take photographs of it taking flight but it was too quick for me and was soon away in the distance..

Tony Cross brought back the white red kite <- from Stourbridge but on releasing it in the pen it was apparent that it needed no more help so it too was let back out into the wild. This time the bird at least stood still for a moment so a few photographs were possible.
Red kites are swarming around the feeding area now that the weather has turned cooler and are frequently low over the farm buildings after having had their fill.

A poorly red kite was brought in by Elfyn Pugh of Red Kite Safaris on Tuesday. It was accompanied by two syringes containing doses of antibiotics prescribed by Aberystwyth Vets. The kite, now having had its two day course of injections, is eating well, although it is too weak to fly at the moment.

Tony Cross brought news of the White Red Kite Chick we had here in rehab in August - it has turned up in Stourbridge! It will be coming back here for another spell in the unit as it was found on the ground, wet, cold, and much in the need of tlc.

Well in exess of 400 red kites descended today. Please note the changing of the clocks tonight - an hour back will mean the kite feeding will be at 2pm for the rest of the winter..

Friday, 10 October 2008

300 red kites

We are now feeding upwards of 300 red kites on a daily basis. These arrive in groups over the entire afternoon - adults first and those in the lower order then come in as their turn occurs. Its not unusual to see younger birds sitting in the trees and waiting their turn.
Visitors to the red kite feeding centre will now be seeing a growing number of new signs. The kite pointing the way is but one of the characters, which I hope, will add a little sparkle to our smaller visitors experience. Red Kite, Buzzard, and Raven are currently depicted. Thinking up characters for magpies, rooks, jackdaws and carrion crows are coming slower. My aim is to have these cartoon characters in every hide so that children may find it fun to pick out birds, as well as the red kites, that frequent the feeding station.
Re-roofing of the damaged buildings has been completed (squirrels had made a 'ski ramp' into the roof of the toilet block so the rain poured in).. Work on the inside can now commence. If everything goes to plan it should be ship shape again this side of Christmas.

Wednesday, 1 October 2008

UK re-introduction programmes

The autumn has brought with it some rare sunshine and with it more kites than I can remember being here at this time of year before.
Visiting kites from around the UK re-introduction programmes are not infrequent and this afternoon a kite from the Black Isle, North Scotland, was diving for food with the best of them. As can be seen on the red kite wing tags page, its Blue/Orange tag combination (below left) was the giveaway. Click for a larger image.

The white kite has been seen by fewer visitor of late as the increase in kites means a much later position in the pecking order and that is frequently too late in the afternoon for most folk.
We have had the wireless system repaired but.. at a cost. When it was installed we were not told that the company doing the work would be the only one in the country that could repair or replace components. Not having surge protectors in the intial installation resulted in component failures. Having no competition they can call the shots on pricing, and believe me they have! We will now cable the routes through which the video from the rehab unit and hide areas travel so that there will be a fall back position if/when the wireless fails again.

Meg, our 20 year old sheepdog, has left us for doggie heaven. She slept alot but would often come to see visitors on the warmer days. 20 years was a fantastic age for a working sheep dog and she was a very good one at that. Meg retired from her rounding up sheep duties when she was around 12.