Red Kite - Milvus Milvus
Persecuted to near extinction in the UK, the Red Kite has made a tremendous comeback thanks to reintroduction programmes and legal protection. Seeing one of these magnificent birds soaring high in the sky is a true delight.
Once a very rare bird that could only be found in Central Wales, the Red Kite has been successfully reintroduced to several areas of the UK and can now be seen in Wales, Yorkshire, the East Midlands and the Chilterns. A large, graceful bird of prey, it soars over woods and open areas, its distinctive shape and 'mewing' calls making it easy to identify. Red Kites were routinely persecuted as hunters of game and domestic animals, but they are in fact scavengers, eating carrion and scraps, and taking only small prey like rabbits.
Red kites were common in Shakespearean London, where they fed on scraps in the streets and collected rags or stole hung-out washing for nest-building materials. Shakespeare even referred to this habit in 'The Winter's Tale' when he wrote: 'When the kite builds, look to lesser linen'. The nest of a red kite is an untidy affair, often built on top of an old Crow's nest. It is lined with sheep's wool and decorated with all kinds of objects like paper, plastic and cloth.
Thank to all who take the time to view, Comment or Fav, It is Always Appreciated.