Tuesday, 29 April 2014


Today I checked what I should have done last week but didn't find the time. On a local walk last week I saw a Raven sitting on a chimney of a disused engine house from old mine workings. After seeing the bird and moving on with the walk a horse rider stopped and asked me what I was doing - a common question when you are carrying field glasses, a stick and a mirror. I told her what I was doing and she informed me that she thinks Raven might be breeding in the engine house as they did last year. Nice one....

My coastal patch that has had 3 pairs in the past has given me nothing this year, very disappointing. There are not many days I don't see Raven but there territories can be up to 18km from memory. I always stop to watch these incredible birds - the UK's largest passerine. To give an idea of size they come with an impressive 135cm wingspan compared to 120cm of the Buzzard. The male Raven weighs a hefty 1.3kg compared to the male Buzzard at 780g although the bigger female comes in at 1kg.

I walked into the engine house expecting to see their nest but only being able to get evidence of breeding when the young fledged. How wrong I was. I'll have to go again tomorrow as I think with my big ladders I will able to record the contents. That will be the nest of the year I think. The houses also contained a reachable Carrion Crow nest and about half a dozen Jackdaw nests.

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