THIS IS A SITE about a small corner of the Weald of Kent somewhere between Biddenden, Benenden and Rolvenden. It's supposed to be about natural history, but just now it's mainly about Tawny Owls because our local owls were the main reason for starting the site in the first place. The area covers about six square miles, extending from a band of forest and woodland in the north to a more open area of fields, orchards and smaller woodland patches in the south, much as in the photo above. For the most part it's a quiet, secluded area as, apart from one rather busy road, the only access is by narrow country lanes or on foot.
The emphasis of the site's on sound recordings, as that's what I mainly do. Dig around in the Tawny Owls or Birds sections for some quite good, long mp3 samples. There's an extensive item on nestboxes in the Tawny Owls section too (see the Tawny Owls main page for a guide to the contents of this section). The Birds and Insects sections are slowly getting added to. Equipment lists what I use, with the microphones section offering musical samples recorded to compare different mics.
Not all the owls on this site are native to Kent! Left, a Bengal Eagle Owl from a local owl sanctuary; middle, a juvenile Fraser's Eagle Owl featured in the Owl Gallery; and right, a young Tawny Owl in flight — she is from Kent. She's also the owl flying across the mast pic at the top, where the owl on the right is her mother.
The Quck Guide to the site is just that, and the site structure is shown in tree form on the
Site Map page. Either is a useful starting point.
Broadband is essential to enjoy the recordings as many of the mp3 files are 1 Mb plus. Please respect my copyright on pics and recordings. You're welcome to download them for use on a personal computer or iPod. Enquiries about any other uses should be sent to the email address given below.
August 2008 — Release of two tawnies
Sophie has at last been released along with a younger sister called Zoe. A year and a half later they are doing well in their new home in the wild. This report will give updates on how they're getting on. Latest news: Sophie has a family, May 2011
Did you know? Many experts say that Tawny Owls brought up in captivity cannot be released into the wild because they are imprinted on humans. These two delightful owls will show you what they think about this.
Nestboxes for Tawny Owls
This site has many suggestions and plans for nicer boxes than you'll find on sale in the UK. On the left is a Dutch-designed letterbox I made last spring.
Construction details and photos of the Dutch box are on this page in the Nestbox section.
To explore the Nestbox section, start on the section's Index page.
CALL FOR HELP: Can you help with a couple of questions about Tawny Owl calls — specifically, about when and how the young male's hoot develops, and whether adult males make the kewick call. For details click here.
RECENT ADDITIONS AND UPDATES
The Mysterious Deaths of Two Tawny Owls <> Other People’s Owls <> The Valley Wildlife dutch letterbox <> News 2009: My critique of some very fishy owl photos <> Aimi Kobayashi — Young pianist extraordinaire <> Release of Sophie and Zoe
NEW The Incredible Jumping Owl
News 2009 kicks off with a forensic examination of a very fishy owl story that's recently made a big splash in four British national newspapers.
See if you can still believe it after reading the analysis here.
This shocking video shows a Tawny Owl suspended by fishing line in a tree by a flooded gravel pit. There, unless rescuers had turned up, it would have awaited a cold, lingering death, unable even to find a firm foothold to support itself and take the weight off its wing. For this lucky owl — and its mate — the outcome was good, but many, many other owls are ensnared by fishing line every year. This video shows what a slow, cruel death those that are not so fortunate will suffer. The white stuff on the water at the beginning shows the poor owl’s desperation — that is the result of shitting itself stupid.
Thank you singaporemick for a brilliant video with music that says it all. And congratulations on the rescue.
Potter: Romilly Hambling. Potter’s assistant: Corinne Orde.
Email: raham [AT] btinternet [DOT] com
Website hosted by web host magician Arvand Sabetian of Arvixe.com
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