One of the things that I love about where we live is the crazy amount of Red Kite’s that there are flying around the area. We had always seen them when we were driving down the M40, particularly around the Princes Risborough area, but hadn’t really realised they were around here so much until after we moved. There are loads of them around and they just fly and swoop down for about 20 minutes and then disappear else where for a while.
Apparently they were nearly extinct in the UK and in 1989 4 Swedish and 1 Welsh bird were released into Buckinghamshire. It seems as though this went a lot better than they expected, as between 2004-2006 94 birds were taken from the Chilterns and released up in the Derwent Valley, and there still seems to be so so many flying around these days.
This afternoon when coming back from a quick walk around West Wycombe as we were pulling into our road there were LOADS of Red Kites swooping down into the road and circling around. I’d never seen them so close before. So when we parked I got out and walked back round to where they were so I could watch them. It really was magical to watch. I tried to get some photos, but my phone camera isn’t the greatest for shots of flying birds or when a good zoom is needed!
As I said my camera wasn’t great, but you can just about make out 13 or so Red Kites in this picture. There were quite a few more flying around that were out of shot as well.
After about 5-10 minutes they seemed to disappear off again so I walked over to see what it was they were all swooping for and trying to eat. Turns out someone had either thrown out a roast chicken carcass or they had someone managed to get one from a bin or someone’s back garden table (weather was lovely today so loads of people had been eating in their gardens by the looks of it). Chris had suggested one day we had roast chicken and put it out so we could watch them do it again, but I’m not entirely sure as to what the neighbours would think of that!
If they had stayed around, I would have quite happily stood around and watched them for ages. They are just fascinating to watch. As I said, this is just one of the reason why I love living here. You never got to see this sort of wildlife while we lived in Bracknell.
What sort of wildlife do you get in your area?