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  • Writer's pictureKate P

Unforgettable Encounter: The Day a Red Kite Graced Our Back Garden

We consider ourselves very lucky to live in Bletchley, where the majestic sight of Red Kites (Milvis Milvus) gracing the skies has become a daily occurrence. For those unfamiliar with these magnificent raptors in the UK, our Red Kites are descendants of the Spanish variety, reintroduced here after facing persecution mainly at the end of the 19th century which nearly led to their extinction in the UK. Initially intended for release in Windsor, an abrupt change of plans by the landowner led to their relocation in the Chilterns during the 1990s. Since their reintroduction, they have not only survived but thrived.

Despite their growing numbers, my fascination with watching and listening to these birds has never waned. Red Kites, opportunistic predators by nature, primarily feed on carrion, such as roadkill. It's intriguing to note that despite their constant surveying for food, sightings of them landing on nearby trees or perching atop houses are rare. This scarcity sparked a curious conversation with Scott in the car recently – wondering where these birds retreat when not in our view. Are they exceptionally clever, choosing secluded spots away from human presence, or do they land unnoticed?

Red Kite soaring
The Skies Above, The usual sighting of a Red Kite

Much to my amazement, a couple of days after pondering this, I was enjoying my morning coffee and engrossed in a book when the distinctive cry of a red kite broke the silence. Rushing to the window, I was greeted by the sight of a red kite perched on a tree in our neighbour's garden. Was it a mere coincidence or had I somehow summoned this moment? My trusty camera, always within reach, allowed me to capture this rare encounter. The kite stayed for a few moments, calling out to another in the distance. I could only speculate – was it a young bird separated from it's parents, or was it simply time for it to explore the world independently? The experience left me in awe, appreciating the beauty of nature unfolding right outside my window and adding to my strong belief in synchronicity.

Red Kite perched unusually in a back garden
Red Kite perched in a tree unusually in a back garden

A Red Kite Looing straight at the camera

A Red Kite peering from a conifer branch

A Red Kite takes off from a tree
Off back to the skies

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