‘Nature is lavish with her riches for those who have eyes to see’
It was as if Bedfordshire was fighting back, making a point about my birdwatching trips to other parts of the country. It was saying ‘look – we have birds here too!’
I’ve had a thing about Red Kites for a while, ever since I saw my first one in Bedfordshire a couple of years ago. They’re a real success story – a bird driven to the edge of extinction, clinging on as a few pairs in Mid-Wales, only to be re-introduced and make a real comeback in England.
The Kites we have here won’t be from the original Welsh stock, they’ll be outliers from the Chilterns, where they’re almost as common as Sparrows. Nevertheless, it is good to see them spreading our way. I can watch them as they re-colonise the countryside.
I’ve been trying to get a picture of one of our local Kites for ages, but they’ve always managed to elude me for one reason and another. Until this morning, that is. I took Scarlett to the nursery at 8.00am and drove home along the back lanes. There, above me, a pair of Red Kites was cavorting on the breeze. Now, as chance would have it I had my camera in the car – I’d brought it along to photograph the sunrise. I pulled over onto the verge, wound down the window and got off a few quick snaps.
And there you have it. My first picture of a Bedfordshire Red Kite. You can just about make out the white bars on the wings, but the silhouette and the forked tail are unmistakable. Maybe I should carry the camera in the car more often…