One of the best known inhabitants of the Tower of London, a raven called Merlina, has disappeared and is feared to have died. The bird, who has been part of the Tower’s roost since 2007, hasn’t been seen for weeks and her keepers now believe she is dead.
Taking to social media, the team at the Tower of London said ”We have some really unhappy news to share. Our much-loved raven Merlina has not been seen at the Tower for several weeks, and her continued absence indicates to us that she may have sadly passed away. Though it isn’t unusual for our ravens to roam outside the walls, free-spirited Merlina has previously always returned to the Tower and to the Ravenmaster and his team, with whom she shared a wonderfully close bond.”
Legend has it that when the ravens leave the Tower of London, the Kingdom of Great Britain falls. However, the Tower was quick to point out that seven ravens now remain at the ancient fortress, one more than the six required to ensure the safety of the realm.
Instead, those who lived alongside Merlina mourned her passing, saying she was ”our undisputed ruler of the roost, Queen of the Tower Ravens. She will be greatly missed by her fellow ravens, the Ravenmaster, and all of us in the Tower community.”
The Tower of London has a raven breeding programme and it’s hoped that in time one of the chicks from that will grow up to replace Merlina.