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Big bird spotted in town’s Witch Wood

A Turkey Vulture found in Witchwood, Lytham. The bird is normally found in North and South America

A Turkey Vulture found in Witchwood, Lytham. The bird is normally found in North and South America

If you go down to the woods today you’re sure for a big surprise – and some Express readers should know more than most, after a large bird of prey was spotted in Lytham.

A turkey vulture, off course by some several thousand miles, has settled in Witch Wood, close to Blackpool Road.

The animal, which is normally found in North or South America, has made its home on the Fylde coast.

Emma-Jo Duffy, who has provided the pictures seen here and is part of the Lytham St Annes Civic Society, which maintains the upkeep of the wood, said the large bird was quite happy in its new surroundings.

She added: “The Lytham St Annes Civic Society had received reports of sightings of a large bird of prey in Witch Wood.

“The bird seems to have settled on the Lytham side of Church Drive Bridge.

“We have identified it as a North American turkey vulture which is either ‘off course’ or has perhaps escaped from a local zoo or bird sanctuary. The vulture is not in the least disturbed by the interest it has attracted and has paid regular visits across the railway track to Lytham Cricket and Sports Club.”

The bird, normally found in the states of Louisiana and North Carolina in America, can migrate as far as Venezuela, Colombia and Ecuador.

But visitor officer at the RPSB centre in Fairhaven Lake, Julie Vale, said there could be a simpler explanation for the bird’s arrival.

She added: “It’s an American species, so it will be an escaped falconry bird or come from a private owner.

“There is a good chance there was a falconry show and it escaped.

“It first appeared after the Bank Holiday – I wonder whether there was a show on somewhere and it has got out. We are trying to discover if it has been tagged and, if so, return it to its owner.”

 

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