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Llanddeusant Red Kite Feeding Station: A Visitor's Guide

The Llanddeusant Red Kite Feeding Station has been pivotal in the recovery of red kites. These majestic birds were extinct in England and Scotland in the late-19th century, while only a small number remained in Wales. Since opening in 2002, the Llanddeusant Red Kite Feeding Station has welcomed thousands of visitors, and the purpose-built hides are the ideal location to watch the red kites feed on a daily basis.

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The Gliffaes Hotel Guide To Llanddeusant Red Kite Feeding Station

Frequently Asked Questions

Where Is Llanddeusant Red Kite Feeding Station?

Llanddeusant Red Kite Feeding Station, Llanddeusant, Llangadog, Carmarthenshire, SA19 9YG (approximately 50 minutes drive from the hotel)

When Is Llanddeusant Red Kite Feeding Station Open?

Llanddeusant Red Kite Feeding Station is open Wednesday-Sunday (closed on Monday & Tuesday).

During Bank Holidays and school holidays, Llanddeusant Red Kite Feeding Station is also open on Monday & Tuesday.

The red kites are fed at 3pm (BST) or 2pm (GMT)

How Long Should I Spend At Llanddeusant Red Kite Feeding Station?

Allow a minimum of 1-2 hours (potentially longer) to allow the red kites time to come and feed.

How Much Is Entry To Llanddeusant Red Kite Feeding Station?

Children: £3.00

Over 60s: £5.00

Adults: £6.00

Can I Park At Llanddeusant Red Kite Feeding Station?

There is limited parking, so it is advisable to arrive early.

Is Llanddeusant Red Kite Feeding Station Wheelchair-Accessible?

Yes. There are ramps and widened access points in place.

When Is The Best Time To Visit Llanddeusant Red Kite Feeding Station?

The summer season is the busiest time of year, especially in the school holidays. Feeding takes place all year round, so you may visit at your convenience.

What Should I Wear To Llanddeusant Red Kite Feeding Station?

There is no dress code for Llanddeusant Red Kite Feeding Station, so dress for the weather. Feeding will still take place in adverse weather conditions, though the hides will keep the rain off.

Is Llanddeusant Red Kite Feeding Station Dog-Friendly?

Dogs are welcome, but must be kept on a lead at all times as the feeding station is in a sheep farming area.

Is There WiFi At Llanddeusant Red Kite Feeding Station?

WiFi is not available at Llanddeusant Red Kite Feeding Station.

Llanddeusant Red Kite Feeding Station: A Conservation Success Story

A trip to the Llanddeusant Red Kite Feeding Station is highly recommended for budding ornithologists or wildlife enthusiasts when staying at the Gliffaes Country House Hotel.

Since opening in 2002, the Llanddeusant Red Kite Feeding Station has grown to become one of the most popular wildlife attractions in Carmarthenshire, welcoming a huge number of visitors each year.

Red Kites: An Introduction

Red kites were a protected species in the United Kingdom until the mid-16th century. Once their protection ceased, bounties were paid by parishes for their carcasses, so they became heavily targeted.

Despite the financial rewards for their demise, the red kite population remained relatively stable until the mid-19th century. Once their numbers started to decrease, they became a target for egg collectors and taxidermists, with this additional attention accelerating them towards extinction.

Red kites were extinct in England and Scotland by 1871 and 1879 respectively. When the first kite protection committee began some 20 years later, there were only a few breeding pairs remaining in central Wales.

Red Kites: A Road To Recovery

Additional protection efforts introduced in the 1950s and 1960s reduced the amount of red kite nests that were targeted by egg collectors, which was seen as a positive step towards their survival.

Despite these increased efforts, red kites were one of only three globally threatened species in the UK by the 1980s.

The situation became even more desperate when it was discovered that low chick production, along with continued egg collecting and illegal poisoning meant that the existing Welsh population would be unlikely to spread out of Wales.

Thriving After Extinction

In 1989, a site in England and a site in Scotland were selected to receive a number of Swedish red kites as part of the ongoing conservation project.

In 1992, successful breeding was recorded at both sites, with the fledglings from that year rearing their own young just 2 years later.

Fast forward to today and there are now more than 10,000 red kites in the United Kingdom, with this number set to increase even further in the coming years.

Visiting The Llanddeusant Red Kite Feeding Station

The Llanddeusant Red Kite Feeding Station really is a wonderful, unique experience.

The purpose-built hides enable guests to sit within a few feet of where the kites will come to feed, while the design is perfect for photographers to get into position to take memorable photos and videos of the feeding frenzy.

Although the kites are fed at the same time every day (3pm during the summer months, 2pm during the winter), there are various factors that can affect when they will come to take the food. Certain weather conditions, farmer activity and seasonal changes can delay the arrival of the birds, so be prepared to wait a while if they fail to make an immediate appearance after the food has been prepared for them.

The Diet Of A Red Kite

As their feet do not possess the strength to kill any powerful prey, red kites mainly feed on dead animals. On occasion, they will take live prey, but these will mainly be small mammals such as mice, rats or voles. When other food sources are scarce, they will also feed on worms, maggots and small insects.

How To Identify A Red Kite

Red kites have a yellow beak and a pale grey head with dark streaks. Their body is rusty in appearance, with red/brown dashes of colour and they possess a forked tail.

Females are slightly larger than males, boasting a wider and broader wingspan. If you see a male and a female side-by-side, then you may notice that the tail of the male is more deeply notched than the female. Males also tend to flex their tails more than females.

A juvenile red kite will appear to have an almost “washed out” look and their tails won’t be so predominantly forked until the reach adulthood.

Species Similar To A Red Kite

Red kites are members of the Accipitridae family, meaning they share many features with buzzards, eagles and harriers.

The red kite is most commonly confused with the buzzard. Their calls sound very similar and they both glide high in the sky while looking for food.

The main differences between and red kite and a buzzard are their size and tails. A red kite will often be larger than a buzzard and possesses a forked tail, while a buzzard has a fanned tail.

As we already mentioned, the red kite population is increasing due to the wonderful conservation efforts at the Llanddeusant Red Kite Feeding Station and others around the UK. However, with the number of red kites in the UK currently at around 10,000, they still have a long way to go until they outnumber buzzards, with an estimated 300,000 in the British Isles.

Predators To The Red Kite

The main predators to red kites are humans. Although protection efforts have been fantastic in bringing these birds back from the brink of extinction, poisoning of rodents still poses a significant risk to them. In the wild, they have no natural predators.

Red Kite Facts

  1. Red kites became extinct in England and Scotland, in 1871 and 1879 respectively
  2. The wingspan of a red kite can reach 1.7m (5.5ft)
  3. Red kites generally live for around 5 years, but have been known to reach 25 years of age

How To Find Llanddeusant Red Kite Feeding Station

Llanddeusant Red Kite Feeding Station is approximately 50 minutes drive from Gliffaes Country House Hotel.

Upon leaving the hotel, proceed east towards the A40 and continue for around 10 miles until you reach Brynich roundabout. Take the 1st exit and continue on the A40 for a further 2.5 miles.

At the next roundabout, take the 3rd exit and stay on the A40 for approximately 11 miles.

As you approach the Castle Coaching Inn, turn left onto Chapel Street and continue for around 8 miles.

Turn right towards the Black Mountain Caravan Park and continue for approximately 150 metres and the Llanddeusant Red Kite Feeding Station will be on your right hand side.

Other Attractions Near Llandeusant Red Kite Feeding Station

With a history dating back to 1480, a visit to Aberglasney Gardens is a must when in Carmarthenshire. This Grade II listed mansion has in excess of 20 styles of gardens within its 10 acres.

If you wish to combine your visit to the Llandeusant Red Kite Feeding Station with a slice of history, then a trip to Carreg Cennen Castle is highly recommended. Dating back almost 1,000 years, it has been voted the most romantic ruin in Wales.

After a 100 year absence, Penderyn Distillery is reigniting the passion for distillation in Wales. Visitors can sample some of the fine whisky during the tour, while designated drivers can take a taster away with them.

Book Your Brecon Beacons Escape

Gliffaes Country House Hotel is nestled in the heart of the Brecon Beacons National Park.

We’ve created a useful guide of local attractions and activities in the Brecon Beacons, containing information on walks, things to do, local shopping, and places to visit, which you can use to help map out your visit to the Brecon Beacons.

If you’re looking for a place to enjoy a fresh, locally sourced lunch, dinner or afternoon tea, or somewhere comfortable to stay the night, our friendly country house hotel is the perfect base for your Brecon Beacons break.

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