Red Kites are one of our biggest birds of prey and despite being persecuted and hunted since the 16th Century they are making a remarkable comeback. It is believed that at the end of the 18th Century the Red Kites were down to just a few breeding pairs hidden away in the rural Mid Wales mountains and the local population soon realised it was down to them to protect this magnificent bird of prey.
Red Kites are distinctive because of their forked tail. Their colour is predominantly chestnut red with white patches under the wings and a pale grey head. They have a wingspan of nearly two metres (about five-and-a-half-feet), but a relatively small body weight of 2 – 3 lbs. This means the bird is incredibly agile, and can stay in the air for many hours with hardly a beat of its wings. Red Kites are neither particularly strong nor aggressive despite being large birds and are primarily a scavenger and an opportunist. Red Kites are however predators and can take a wide variety of live prey, ranging from earthworms to small mammals, amphibians and birds.
Red Kites usually breed for the first time at 2 or 3 years old. They usually pair for life, although this is thought to be more because of a mutual attachment to the same territory and nest sites rather than any great attachment to each other.
Bodfuan shoot are proud to have a pair of Kites on our shoot and we will do all we can to protect them.