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Last Updated: Monday, 28 November 2005, 10:06 GMT
Birds of prey up for 'adoption'
Red kite
The red kite has a wing span of up to two metres
Schools throughout the north-east of England are being offered the chance to adopt their own bird of prey.

Red kites had been absent from northern England for at least 150 years until 20 birds were re-introduced into Gateshead's Derwent Valley last year.

Their progress is being followed by the schools which adopted them, and now 10 more birds are available for adoption on a first-come first-served basis.

The schools name their kite and will receive updates on its activities.

The Northern Kites project is managed by English Nature and the RSPB in partnership with Gateshead Council, Northumbrian Water, National Trust and the Forestry Commission.

Unique project

Schools throughout the region are invited to adopt a bird, in particular those in Teesdale, Weardale and Northumberland.

Melanie Bowden, from Northern Kites, said: "The Adopt-a-Kite scheme is a great opportunity for the region's children to get involved in this exciting project.

"By adopting a kite, schools can provide pupils with a unique opportunity to learn about red kites and other wildlife through this ground-breaking project."

The Adopt-a-Kite scheme is free and interested schools can contact Melanie Bowden at the Northern Kites office.

Participating schools receive an introduction to their bird and regular updates, including the chance to see the kites in the wild.


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