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Country diary: the raven's call sounds oddly out of place

Pickworth Great Wood, Rutland: These once-persecuted birds are gradually returning to their historic lowland hauntsThis February, visiting Wimpole Hall in Cambridgeshire, I was mildly discombobulated to hear an enthusiastically cronking raven, sitting in the top of a tall conifer in the grounds. We perceive these intelligent and long-lived birds as western rulers of the upland skies, but they were once also characteristic of lowland woods. While they have been gradually recovering from historic persecution, they have not bred in Cambridgeshire, or further east, in living memory. The Wimpole bird, which was joined by another, has raised the possibility of them returning there as a breeding bird.Pickworth Great Wood, which is dominated by oak, ash and hazel, sits inside the Rutland border, just north of Stamford. Ravens have already returned to these forests, but, as I watch 20 or so red kites drift effortlessly in the breeze along the edge of the wood, an exchange of deep rasping calls between a couple of ravens still sounds out of place. Continue reading...
Zdroj: The Guardian

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