Average lifespan: 4 years
When to seeJanuary to December
AboutOnce a very rare bird that could only be found in Central Wales, the Red Kite has been successfully reintroduced to several areas of the UK and can now be seen in Wales, Yorkshire, the East Midlands and the Chilterns. A large, graceful bird of prey, it soars over woods and open areas, its distinctive shape and 'mewing' calls making it easy to identify. Red Kites were routinely persecuted as hunters of game and domestic animals, but they are in fact scavengers, eating carrion and scraps, and taking only small prey like rabbits.
How to identifyThe Red Kite is a large bird of prey with angled, red wings that are tipped with black and have white patches underneath in the 'hand'. It has a long, reddish-brown, forked tail.
In our area
Red kites were limited to their stronghold in Wales, but have spread east into Shropshire and are becoming an increasingly common site in the hilly areas in the central and western reaches of the county. They are often seen soaring over The Stiperstones Ridge and Nipstone Rock throughout the year.