‘Local pride soaring high in Red Kite Country’ – Hazzard
South Down Assemblyman Chris Hazzard has congratulated the RSPB for their on-going commitment to restoring the Red Kite bird to the south Down countryside.
The Sinn Féin MLA was a guest of the RSPB as they visited local nesting sites, and having been able to see the bird of prey soaring high in the local skies he spoke of his “sense of pride” that the species re-introduction scheme has been such a success in the south Down area.
Speaking to Newry Times, Hazzard said;
“Haven been persecuted to extinction a few hundred years ago, it is fantastic to see the Red Kite re-introduced to the Irish countryside. The sight of the large red raptors overhead is becoming a real source of pride for local people as the return of this bird to the area is arguably one of the greatest conservation achievements in recent times.”
“Central to the success of this scheme has been the ‘Adopt a Kite’ programme which has seen local schoolchildren learn about the Red Kite species and has given them the opportunity to adopt their very own bird. The time and effort that the RSPB and other local organisations have put into this project is hugely impressive, and it is certainly appreciated by the local community.”
He continued, “Indeed, the cooperation between the relevant organisations and the community – who have taken the time to report sightings of the Red Kites and permit access to their land to survey and monitor the birds – is crucial in the future success of the Red Kite in south Down.”
“Local people are delighted to be involved in this conservation project, and as the success of the re-introduction continues apace, the growing reputation of south Down as ‘Red Kite Country’ is a source of great local pride and admiration.”
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