Our pair of ravens are now on display in their new aviary, and just in time for the summer opening period as we are now open every day for the summer until the 3rd of September. They are in the new aviary on the left hand side as you head towards the wetland boardwalk. A lovely large aviary, with extra height, which gives them some great roosting areas to overlook the whole Centre and much of the reserve too.
Our two are still young, and although pretty much fully grown, will still take a while to fully mature, bulk out and develop into adult plumage and look. Ravens are the largest members of the crow family, differing from the others not only in size but also with their heavier built and larger black beak, their more wedge like shaped tail when flying and ruffled shaggy feathers around the throat and above the beak.
Huginn and Muninn, as we have called them, came to us as very young chicks from a corvid rescuer and raven breeder local to us. Hand reared from this young age, they are very friendly, and enjoy human interaction.
Ravens are fascinating birds, and it will be great for visitors to see and hear about them over the coming weeks. I think for me the most interesting things about them are the folklore, myths and history through different cultures. Their names for example, Huginn and Muninn, come from the names of the Norse god Odin's two ravens. Huginn (thought) and Muninn (memory) would fly over the world, and report back to Odin.
And of course, perhaps most famous, Edgar Allen Poe's poem "The Raven"
You will see our ravens long before you get to their avairy. They love to perch up high, which gives them a view of the Centre and a chance for you to see them above the owl aviaries as you wander down towards them.
Don't forget that we are now open for the summer holildays, everyday until the 3rd of September. Hope to see many of you here over the next few weeks.