Thursday, 4 August 2011

Winged wonders to get cosy in new-look Leeds home



Caption: The female (top) and male (above) Andean Condors are two of the star attractions at Lotherton Hall bird garden

Two of the more exotic residents of Leeds will be celebrating this week as their home has been given a makeover.

A pair of Andean Condors which live at Lotherton Hall bird garden near Aberford will be able to see first-hand the improvements made to their aviary home when they are reintroduced to it on Friday (5 August).

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All media are invited to attend the reintroduction of the Andean Condors to their aviary at Lotherton Hall bird garden at 3:30pm on Friday 5 August (tomorrow). Lotherton Hall is located off Collier Lane near Aberford, LS25 3EB.
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Over the last three weeks officers from Leeds City Council’s parks and countryside service which maintain the bird garden have been carrying out a refurbishment of the giant flight aviary.

The refurbishment, which is the first major maintenance carried out since the aviary opened in 2000, has seen the waterfalls and stream resealed, the pond emptied and relined with natural stone and the landscape being given a general facelift.

To allow the work to be carried out, the male and female condors which arrived from Flamingo Land in North Yorkshire in June 2009 have been temporarily rehoused.

Andean Condors originate from South America where the Andes Mountains are their natural habitat, with males having the longest wingspan of any land-based flying bird in the world measuring up to 3.2 metres (over 10 feet). In their aviary both birds can often be seen showing off their wingspan as they sit and sunbathe stretching out their wings.

At Lotherton Hall, they are fed on a diet of fresh meat and fish, while in the wild they scavenge on dead or dying animals.

The pair share their aviary with another bird of prey, a Turkey Vulture, along with two Chiloe Widgeon ducks. As well as the condors, the bird garden is home to approximately 200 species of birds from all over the world including flamingos, emus, owls and waterfowl.

Lotherton Hall bird garden manager Peter Quince said:

“The Andean Condors are two of the star attractions at the bird garden here at Lotherton Hall, and we hope they will look better than ever now we have carried out the refurbishment of their aviary. They are amazing birds to look at, so now would be a great time for people of all ages to come along and see them along with the other fantastic birds we have on display.”

The Lotherton Hall bird garden forms part of the Lotherton Hall house and estate managed by Leeds City Council. For more information on the bird garden call 0113 264 5535, or for general information call 0113 281 3259 or visit www.leeds.gov.uk/lothertonhall/

ENDS

For media enquiries please contact:
Roger Boyde, leisure media relations officer,
Tel 0113 247 5472, email: roger.boyde@leeds.gov.uk