Guest blog by RSPB President Miranda Krestovnikoff
I came to birdwatching rather late in life but now my days are totally focused around the birds I see and the interactions I have with them.
RSPB President, Miranda Krestovnikoff - Jesper Mattias (rspb-images.com)
We have a pair of kestrels nesting in our garden and they have become so used to us that we can walk around the garden and just watch them flying from tree to tree. There is a camera in their nest box which feeds into a monitor in our kitchen. At the moment there is a great deal of activity going on – dinner and a show. It’s incredibly captivating and hours can be lost watching them. A career in wildlife filming and presenting is often about spending long periods of time watching and waiting for something to happen. But it’s nearly always worth it!
The kestrels’ behaviour has been really changing in the past few days. More prey is being brought into the box, more frequent visits and both male and female “wriggling” when sitting there, making an indentation in the shallow nesting material.
Any day now, we should have our first egg of the season! Last year we had 5 eggs and 4 hatched and fledged so we are looking forward to a magical couple of months as the next generation begin their new lives.
Kestrel Cam, two kestrels in nesting box - Miranda Krestovnikoff
I’m really fortunate to have been able to witness so much amazing wildlife such as our resident kestrels, both while at home and in my career as a wildlife presenter. I’m really looking forward to telling you about some of these experiences in my upcoming talk on Thursday 8th April.
I’ve been delighted to see that the joy which spending time in nature can bring us, has been embraced by the next generation. For example, during lockdown, my son built his own birdwatching den in the woods behind our house where he spends many happy hours watching and listening to the ever-increasing number of birds we have around us. I hope many of you similarly found solace in nature throughout the difficulties of the past year.
It’s wonderful to be able to share my love of nature. Together, my son and I have been listening out for the songs of the chiffchaffs and skylarks that herald the start of Spring, as we hope for brighter days ahead.
If you’d like to learn more about Miranda’s life as a wildlife presenter, and the passion for the natural world that her and fellow wildlife presenter Lizzie Daly both share, then join their talk on Thursday 8th April. They’ll be discussing “where it all started, some of the highlights (and low lights!) and all things wild”.
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