There is nothing like looking down from a raven’s eyrie to blow the cobwebs away (and to make you shiver as you look over the edge).
I got the chance to do both in mid-March this year, when I was asked to advise about how to conserve ravens at a site in the midlands. The building is due for demolition and the site owners are very keen to do as much as possible to conserve the wildlife on their site.
Unlike the ravens close to where I live in the Forest of Bowland, which often nest on cliffs, this pair had chosen a tall building on an industrial site. In fact, as long-lived birds, they may have nested there for a long time. I found 6 nests altogether, but only one showed signs of occupation.
After spending a fair amount of time climbing up and down ladders and steps, I was able to get into a position to observe the birds without disturbance. As soon as each nest was clear, I had a quick look for signs of recent occupation. One of the nests had 6 eggs – bingo!
So, the job is now to observe carefully, identify alternative nesting sites and work up a plan of action.
Watch this space for updates as things progress.