Posted: 24/04/2014 12:16:37 by
Ullswater Steamers has teamed up with the RSPB for a special cruise ‘Water, Predator and Heathland Birds Cruise’ which will sail from Glenridding on May 17 at 9.45am.
Organisers say passengers can look to the skies in search of the peregrine falcon, while trying not to miss the spectacular birds, which may appear on the water.
The cruises involves passing ancient woodlands, fells and islands, which organisers say provide habitat for some of England’s rarest species of flora and fauna, such as the red breasted merganser, the nuthatch and otters, as well as Peregrine Falcons in the sky.
Great rafts of gulls also roost on the lake and the bays are frequented by mallards, greylag geese, goosanders, kingfishers, cormorants, dippers, sandpipers and ospreys have all been sighted on passage.
After an hour on the lake, the Steamer stops at Pooley Bridge, where a mini bus will escort passengers to Askham Fell, which is home to many intriguing ancient sites from stone circles to burial cairns and a herd of wild ponies.
Suitable clothing including walking boots is needed as a moderate walk is involved and guests are advised to take a packed lunch.
Tickets need to be booked in advance and are £12.50 for an RSPB member and £14.50 for non-members, with children half price. Profits go to RSPB. For further information about events and cruises with Ullswater Steamers please visit www.ullswater-steamers.co.uk or call on 017684 82229.
Posted: 15/04/2011 16:25:53 by
TWO thirds of the red kites released in Grizedale Forest last summer have survived the harsh winter.
Wildlife rangers believe that around 20 of the 30 birds released in the Forestry Commission’s three-year re-introduction programme made it through the winter and are still in Cumbria, or nearby counties. Between five and eight of the birds are believed to be living around Grizedale and the Rusland Valley, with another three to five inhabiting the Kirkby Moor area near Ulverston.
Four more Grizedale red kites have been spotted by RSPB experts at feeding stations in Dumfries and Galloway – the furthest known movement is by the bird tagged as number four, which has flown 120km north west into Scotland.
“The birds are doing pretty much exactly as we expected, which is very encouraging,” said Iain Yoxall, Forestry Commission wildlife ranger. “We are more confident that these birds will make it to adults now they have made it through a harsh winter. Sadly we lost a few birds but that is natural and why we have to release the numbers that we did.”
The 30 red kites released from a secret location in Grizedale Forest in August last year had coloured tags on each wing. An orange tag on their left wing shows they are from Grizedale, and blue tags on their right wings indicate that they were released in 2010. Some birds were also fitted with radio transmitters to help with monitoring.
Mr Yoxall, who has been following the birds’ movements around Cumbria, said the help he has received from the public had been invaluable. “I have been radio tracking the birds but sightings from members of the public have been a fantastic help and greatly appreciated. This has been very important because it helps us find the birds and backs up our radio tracking results to give us a more robust picture of their movements. We hope that the public will continue letting us know when and where they make sightings of the red kites.”
This year’s birds will hatch in May and are likely to be released into Grizedale Forest in August. The red kites being introduced into Grizedale are the product of a reintroduction programme that took place in Northamptonshire in the 1980s.
Red kites were almost eradicated from the UK following changes in farming practices and human persecution between the 16th and 19th centuries. But they managed to cling on in Wales, and their numbers recovered slowly thanks to the actions of local conservationists