view:  full / summary

new ravens settling in.

Posted by Igraine hustwitt Skelton on July 17, 2016 at 4:25 PM Comments comments (0)

Our two new raven chicks, Emyrus a common raven and Odo our African white neck raven are settling in well at the castle, Odo came from a conservation centre in Italy. He is now nearly three months old and still silly tame as they say. This means at the moment he can be stroked by the visitors. Arthur our adult white neck was very placid, so I am hoping Odo will not get like the common ravens and start to nip. Emyrus is now almost four months old also a male but he is showing signs of aggression, if this continues he will have to become an aviary bird. But it could just be a fleeting phase, as he gets older he might settle down. He has taken to standing on the fist very well, but once on he starts to peck at the glove and wanders up people's arm. I need to spend some one to one time with him, but I am so busy trying to get as much blacksmithing done (my other job) before the six week school holidays, because then I will be at the castle everyday.

For those who are fans of Raven Izabella, she has her own facebook page. Knaresborough castle raven Izabella, so you can keep up with her antics there.

Possible additions to collection

Posted by Igraine hustwitt Skelton on December 30, 2015 at 8:40 AM Comments comments (0)

There are two pairs of white neck ravens for sale and a pair of Alpine choughs, I would like to purchase at least one pair, but which, the wnr should be the preferred choice. Then I want our ravens to bred a new pair might unsettle them, so maybe I should just wait until later next year, then they might be an odd raven chick that would be better for us. As we need a display raven not a breeding pair. 

changes with display ravens

Posted by Igraine hustwitt Skelton on October 3, 2015 at 4:15 PM Comments comments (0)

After the sad loss of H.M. Gabriel raven, Ravenelf has come out of semi retirement, she has taken to being back on duty very well. The new Knaresborough Castle Ravens 2016 calendar is at the printers and will be available in a couple of weeks priced at £7-99. It contains some beautiful photographs by the ravens very own professional photographer Roy Hampson . Gabriels very own book is also going to press next week, that is priced at £8-99 entitled 'The Comical Exploits of Raven Gabriel'  it is written  in the first person and is diary of her arrival at three weeks old up to her first birthday. A lot of it is actually true, but with a little poetic licence , it is suitable for young and old, and because it is in diary form, you can read as much or as little as you want in one reading session, but will not lose the gest of the story.

buriel of H.M. Raven Gabriel.

Posted by Igraine hustwitt Skelton on September 25, 2015 at 4:35 AM Comments comments (0)

it is with a heavy heart I have to tell all our friends that today 25/09/2015 we have buried our beloved Gabriel. As it is with Royal protocol she has been buried in the dry moat at Knaresborough Castle, so now she is free to fly around whenever she pleases. We will all miss her, she touched so many people, both young and old, but her spirit will live on in our hearts. Rest in Peace my beautiful friend. 

public notice.

Posted by Igraine hustwitt Skelton on September 17, 2015 at 9:50 AM Comments comments (0)

It is with much sadness that I have to report our much loved royal raven Gabriel was found dead in the dry moat at Knaresborough Castle this am. It appears she was the victim of a crow attack. She brought a lot of joy to adults and children alike. she worked with the well known disabled actor Jez Coulbourn, superstar Warrick Davies, in Holmgana the Viking film produced by Glass canon, and her last performance was with Sir Terry Wogan and Mason Mcqueen. Rest in Peace. dear friend.

H.M.Raven Gabriel 10/04/2000 to 17/9/2015.

Nest building with gusto

Posted by Igraine hustwitt Skelton on February 22, 2015 at 11:00 AM Comments comments (0)

I do not want to tempt fate, but both Mongo and Vivian have been busy all week nest building. It is huge, they have nearly used all the sticks I put in for them. Gave them some more this am and some more nest lining. Will post some photo's when I have taken some. They caught me off gaurd, so I never got chance to put a web cam in. The nest is so high, if they carry on vivian will not be able to get into it. The weather has turned now raining, but am hopeful for first egg mid week. Then it will just be an egg, Mongo is a big bird, territorial now, so what he will be like when there are eggs in the nest, so I am not even going to try and candle them. This next month is going to be nerve wracking, waiting for the possible cries of raven chicks. It has been along time coming, 7 years since our last chicks, and only Mourdour living to adulthood. Foget the year of the sheep, could this be the year of the raven????

             In other news, went to the viking film night saw Holmgana the film Gabriel was in only a short film 11 minutes but what a film , it was terrific, Gabriel looked wonderful, not like she does at the moment, feathers hanging out everywhere, going to the vet with her friday, she is just not herself, then she is nearly 15, but she has come quite moody almost vicious, especially towards me, I hope she is ok. Some superstions say, for new life to be born, a life must be lost. I hope we do not get chicks at the expense of Gabriel.

Another film part for Gabriel

Posted by Igraine hustwitt Skelton on December 1, 2014 at 1:00 PM Comments comments (0)

They say don't they its not what you knows as who you know. I had an email from a lovely chap called Alex, he works for Vincent Regan, yes that one the movie star. Well he along with Dame Judi Dench started a theatre company in Beverley they are doing a interpretation of Charles Dickens A Christmas Carol' over the next month into January next year. Alex is a friend of one of the production crew at Glass Cannon, so he saw Gabriel in their Viking film 'Holmgana'. He loved the bit with Gabriel and suggested to Mr Regan that it might be good to have her in the film part of the play. So he emailed me, we filmed last week. I can not wait to see the play. Izabella is well miffed, at this rate Gabriel will be more famous than her. 

Gabriel Raven in the spotlight again.

Posted by Igraine hustwitt Skelton on September 12, 2014 at 6:55 PM Comments comments (0)

It has been a busy time for H.M. Raven Gabriel, Along with myself, we had the great honour of taking part in some filming at Mother Shipton's cave for ITV. With Warwick Davies no less. (wow we have met a real movie star). It was for his weekend away TV series, which I belive will be on the TV next spring. Mongo and Vivien seem to be very much in love, it is wonderful to see them stood on the nest platform their beaks intertwined. It was the right thing to do full marks to my husband who suggested it. We are planning to go live with a web cam in the next month or so, once I get myself organised.

As for Gabriel she has turned into a right diva, I am quite worried about her at the moment. She is usually so placid, but has become really aggressive. This has happened before but quite some time ago. She has also started making this strange grunting noise, which I have not heard before. I am keeping a close eye on her. It will soon be the end of the season for the castle, so both birds will be able to fly free on a more regular basis, so talons crossed this helps calm her down.

Our new ravens

Posted by Igraine hustwitt Skelton on August 12, 2014 at 5:55 AM Comments comments (0)

I have been very lax in not keeping you all up to date with how our ravens are doing. I was saddened by the loss of Ramases Neffetari, then Daya Desta, and my beautiful white necked raven Arthur, to that terrible illness. Vivian has however fought of the disease, and has flourished in the last few months.

We were able to purchase two comman ravens from a falconary lady in Northhamptonshire, one male one female. Going by the names of Mongo and Mortimer. They had been in the avairy together, but Mortimer obviously did not feel attracted to Mongo. He had built a nest for the last three years, but nothing else happened. Mortimer is a very timid bird and I think she felt intimidated by Mongo, he is( a big lad). We thought about trying Mortimer at the castle. So we brought her into the house in a large cage so Izabella would not bully her. She was settled until you looked at her, then she would turn manic. So we put her back outside in the avairy. We put Vivian in with Mongo, and hey presto, within five minutes she displayed to him fanning her tail. They now sit on the perch together with their beaks entwined. It is such a touching sight. I am going to try and get a photo to upload. We are hopeful they will go on and breed next spring. We will be doing a springwatch and have camera's above the nest platform. So you will be able to follow their progress. It also means we can watch the nest without having to bother the birds. Ringing the chicks will be a major task.

In other news there is a pair of white necked ravens for sale, plus a male bird. I would like to purchase all three, but am hoping I can secure finance for the male at least. I am hoping he is hand reared, then he can go to the castle, but have not heard back about this yet. I think thats all for now. Just to say Gabriel has increased her film portfolio, she has stared in a film with Jez Colbourn a welknown disabled actor in a film called 'The sound of the Sirens'. She has also been in Glass cannons Viking film ' Holmganga'. And this Sunday the 17th August she is filming with Warrick Davies at Mother Shiptons cave.