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Issue 9 - Letsgospyakite

Scotland Magazine Issue 9
July 2003

 

This article is 14 years old and some information provided may be time sensitive. Please check all details of events, tours, opening times and other information before travelling or making arrangements.

Copyright Scotland Magazine © 1999-2017. All rights reserved. To use or reproduce part or all of this article please contact us for details of how you can do so legally.

Letsgospyakite

GRAHAMHOLLIDAYEXPLAINSWHERETOSPOTBIRDOFPREYTHEREDKITE,ONCEEXTINCTBUTNOWSUCCESSFULLYRE-INTRODUCEDTOSCOTLAND

RedkiteswereoncewidespreadinScotland,butbecameextinctinthe1870s.The1990ssawScottishNaturalHeritage(SNH)andtheRoyalSocietyfortheProtectionofBirds(theRSPB)teamuptoreturnthisstrikingraptortoScottishshores.AttheRSPBreservearoundLochKen,nearCastleDouglasinDumfriesandGalloway,nearly60kiteshavebeenreleasedoverthelasttwoyears,withplansforafurther30thissummer.KitechicksfledgebyAugust,andshouldbeonthewingtogetherwiththeadultsthroughoutthewholeofAugust,makingLochKenagoodviewingpoint.

ThelochisfurtherenhancedthisyearwiththeopeningoftheRedKiteTrail.Thisisthefirst‘MakingTracks’projecttobearfruit.MakingTracks,fundedbyVisitScotland,isasustainablenature-basedtourismprojectforthesouthofScotland.Thetrail,whichopensinAugust,willofferanabundanceofinformation,guidedwalksandthefirstopportunityinScotlandtoseeredkitesatafeedingstation.

“ItishopedthattheGallowayKiteTrailwillhelptogetacrossthemessageoftheimportanceofwildlife,thehabitatsthatsupportitandtheneedtotakecareofit,”saysRSPB’sChrisRollie.

Nightowlsmightwanttogolookingforbadgers,thelargestmembersoftheweaselfamily,onlatesummerevenings.Thispowerful,short-leggedanimalwithadistinctiveblackandwhite-stripedheadiscommon,butverydifficulttoseebecauseitisalmostentirelynocturnalandspendsagreatdealoftimeinundergroundsetts.Asatrueomnivore,itwilleatalmostanything,andafewtemptingmorselsleftinthegardencanbringsomeoftheseelusivetown,cityandcountrysidedwellersouttoplay.Shortsummernightsmeanbadgerscanbeseenmoreoftenatthistimeofyear.TheScottishWildlifeTrustFallsofClydeReserveinNewLanarkhasanumberof‘Badgerwatch’eveningsstartingat7pm.Visitorsaretakentoaviewingplatformthatoverlooksasettforvirtuallyguaranteedbadgeraction.

Thereservealsooperatesevening‘Batwalks’.Ofthefivespeciesinthereserve,PipistrellandDaubenton’sbatsarethemostcommonlyseen.Badgers,owls,woodcockandroedeerarealsooftenspottedontheguidedtwo-houreveningwalk,whichkicksoffat8pmthroughAugustandSeptember.Youshouldbookearlyifyouwantagoodchanceofseeingtheseattractivecreaturesofthenight,asboththeseeventsarepopularandvisitornumbersarelimited.Telephonethevisitorcentretomakeareservation.

NoreservationsareneededatVaneFarmRSPBReservebyLochLeven.Latesummerbringsoutwillowwarblersandtreepipits,andbesuretokeepyourearsopenforsignsofgreatspottedwoodpeckersatwork.

Datesforyourdiary
August30th–September1st
SCOTTISHWILDLIFE&COUNTRYSIDEFAIR
RSPBVaneFarmNatureReserve
ByLochLeven
Kinross
KY139LX
Tel.+44(0)1313116500

August30th/31st
WHALEANDDOLPHINIDENTIFICATIONWEEKEND
TheScottishSeabirdCentre
TheHarbour
NorthBerwick
EH394SS
Tel.+44(0)1620890202
Email:info@seabird.org

FALLSOFCLYDERESERVE
Tel.+44(0)1555665262