Wednesday, 2 September 2009

Sunshine and rain makes for unpredictable kites

The last 30 days have been torturous in the extreme as the kites have had such an unreliable time table. The worst day so far, thursday 6th August, it was 5:30 when the kites came down for food. That was a very warm and sunny day. Since then, timings have been anywhere from 3pm on the dot, on cool days, to todays 5:15 in the pouring rain.

August is a particularly awkward month as the rooks that are normally ready to fly in for a meal at any opportunity have instead been to the the hills for the hatching of grubs.

This has left nervous carrion crows and ravens on patrol and neither of these birds have been eager to be first to land on the meat.
The red kites are then of a mind that the meat will be 'safe' no matter how long they stay aloft.

Today it was the rain that started quite lightly at lunch time, but gained strength as the afternoon unfolded, until shortly after I'd put out the food it lashed down and drove everything into the trees.
It only brightened just after 5pm and 10 minutes later kites and ravens were themselves pouring in for food.


Tony Cross brought in a new patient - a 20yr old red kite!
This has to be the oldest inhabitant of the rehabilitation units to date.

This kite is a bit of mystery as no injuries have been found, and it eats its rations, but will not fly.

No. 63 has come on well and now stands on both feet, flys the length of the rehab unit, and if anything is now a little too heavy since regaining its appetite.

1 comment:

  1. We were camping at Gigrin during the week including that (lovely!) warm thursday. We viewed the feeding ground from above up on the nature trial. The hides were packed with rows of expectant faces but.....not a dickie bird! Even the fence posts, usually squabbled over by a variety of crows were eerily vacant.
    We turned our bins skyward and slowly started to pick out growing numbers of kites, way up high cruising the thermals.
    We continued an enjoyable walk and by the time we got back to the now empty hides the show had started. As ever,it did not disappoint.

    Angi & Rog