Video LoadingVideo UnavailableClick to playTap to playThe video will auto-play soon8CancelPlay now

Our free email newsletter sends you the biggest headlines from news, sport and showbiz

Sign upWhen you subscribe we will use the information you provide to send you these newsletters. Sometimes they’ll include recommendations for other related newsletters or services we offer. OurPrivacy Noticeexplains more about how we use your data, and your rights. You can unsubscribe at any time.Thank you for subscribingWe have more newslettersShow meSee ourprivacy noticeInvalid Email

The Tower of London’s famous 'Queen' raven has been missing for several weeks and is now feared dead.

In a statement on Twitter, Tower of London staff said Merlina's continued absence indicated she may have sadly passed away.

Merlina, who joined the tower’s flock in 2007, was the "ruler of the roost" and will be missed, the statement said.

Legend says that unless six ravens are kept at the Tower of London at all times, the kingdom of Britain will fall, My London reports.

As the fortress currently has seven ravens, Tower of London staff have said there are currently no plans to replace Merlina.

The statement 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.

The Tower of London's "Queen" raven
(Image: PA)

Read More
Related Articles


  • Get the day's biggest stories to your email – sign up for the Mirror newsletter

Read More
Related Articles


  • Land reduced to smoking ruin after Australian bushfires rises from ashes a year on

"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.

"Since joining us in 2007, Merlina 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."

Merlina, who joined the tower’s flock in 2007
(Image: PA)

Read More
Related Articles


  • Dog with huge eyelashes melts hearts as people compare her to a Disney character

The landmark’s official twitter account posted: "We now have 7 ravens here at the Tower — one more than the required 6, so we don’t have any immediate plans to fill Merlina’s vacancy.

"However in time we hope that a new chick from our breeding programme will be up to the formidable challenge of continuing her legacy."

The legend of the Tower ravens has a history spanning more than three centuries.

The Tower ravens are "intelligent birds" (file photo)
(Image: Getty Images/iStockphoto)

The legend of the Tower ravens has a history spanning more than three centuries (file photo)
(Image: Getty Images/iStockphoto)

It is said to have started with King Charles II, who decreed that six ravens be kept in the battlements at all times after he was warned that the crown and kingdom would fall if they left.

While most ravens only live between 10 and 15 years, the Tower ravens have been known to live as long as 40 years.

According to the Tower of London website, the Tower ravens are "intelligent birds" that can "mimic sounds, play games and solve problems".

The other six Tower ravens are named Jubilee, Harris, Gripp, Rocky, Erin and Poppy.