Mannkind Pedigrees

Breeding Texel And Lleyn Rams For Commercial Sheep Farmers

Red Kite In The Quantocks

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I have been hoping and waiting for this moment for YEARS!

Today, at 11.45am(ish) I was chatting with a neighbour up at the sheepshed when he suddenly looked up and said, “oh look there’s a buzzard”. He knows that I have a deep interest in birds of prey and so will always draw my attention to them if he sees and I don’t.

I turned and looked up and instantly replied, “oh no it isn’t…that’s a Red Kite! A female Red Kite! This hasn’t just made my day…it’s made my year! I’m so happy to see her…at last!”

I have seen lot’s of Red Kites in my life, most recently in Switzerland at Easter. But I have never seen a wild one in the UK. Today that all changed.

There have been rumours of Red Kite in the Quantocks for a few years now. But, no substantiated sightings from anyone who really knows about raptors. Until today, when I saw ‘my bird’.

We watched in awe as she climbed above us on a thermal, then folded her wings and accelerated away towards Taunton. Wonderful, wonderful.

The sighting raises so many questions: Where did she come from – Wales or Oxfordshire? How long has she been here? Does she have a mate nearby and will they breed this year? Where? Will they stay? Oh, please do! I just can’t wait to see her again.

What a great day. In fact what a really good birding weekend this Bank Holiday is proving to be, because in addition to seeing ‘my’ Red Kite today I also heard a cuckoo yesterday (my first here for a number of years) and the swallows arrived too. Spring really is here now isn’t it?

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Author: Imogen Mann

Imogen Mann is a multi-skilled and multi-tasking individual: she is the proprietor of Freshtracs fitness & wellbeing - a personal training business based in Somerset which provides bespoke training solutions for individuals and sports people; a pedigree livestock farmer and specialist agricultural solicitor. Visit www.freshtracs.com and www.mannkind.com

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