Tuesday 14th May 2013
We’ve had visual confirmation that the Northern Hawk Owls in the Main Display and the Tengmalm’s Owls in the Breeding Ground have owlets. This is always an exciting moment when you have your first sighting. Spring seems to have arrived, despite the weather, which appears to be reading from a different script. I have included a picture of the Bluebells, which have finally made an appearance, as well as the Cuckoo Flowers which are the food plant for the Orange Tip Butterfly. I haven’t managed to actually see an Orange Tip yet, but it is early days yet. Speaking of which, I haven’t seen any Wasp queens either. Speaking of the weather, our honorary president Tony Warburton came into the office while I was writing this, and informed me that the Hedgehogs we released last week, have in fact gone back into hibernation, as the nights have been that cold!
We had one day of glorious weather last week, and as fortune would have it, I was off that day. I took the opportunity to go to Hodbarrow; the local R.S.P.B. nature reserve. All things ‘bird’ was making hay while the sun shone. I managed to see a small ‘flotilla’ of Eider ducks that were on the shore of the lagoon. The Eider has a very distinctive call, almost like the howl of a wolf. They were having a lively discussion with lots of ‘ahooo’s’. It’s quite fascinating to know that the Eider colony from Walney Island are in fact the most Southerly colony on Earth; Life on the Edge!
As I am writing this, a new aviary is being built in the Main Display. This is the first new exhibit in years. It will house Magellan Horned Owls, which at present live down in our ‘off view’ collection in the Breeding Ground, and who are being exclusively adopted by the ‘Orient Express’. The Orient Express has also provided all the funding for this new aviary. It should be ‘up and running’ by the end of the May.
We managed to get a few members at ‘Meet the Birds’ last week, in spite of the weather. Hopefully this is a sign of things to come.
See you next week
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The World Owl Trust is a member of the British and Irish Association of Zoos and Aquariums (BIAZA) and the European Association of Zoos and Aquariums (EAZA). The Trust relies on a dedicated membership, visitors, donations and legacies.