• Is it too early for spring??

    After the drama of the tidal surge last month I can report that the island has drained and is back to its former spectacular self. I headed out there on Saturday for a very chilly day with the first visitor trip of the year. The visitors who braved the freezing cold were rewarded with lagoons packed full of birds, marsh harriers (before we even got of the boat), barn owls and hares.

    As soon as we landed on the Jetty we…

    • 4 Feb 2019
  • How to start the new year!

    Last week I decided to head straight out to Havergate on my first day back after Christmas break.  It certainly blew the cobwebs away and helped me get into a good state of mind for the new year. It was a wonderful day, cold but sunny, and the lagoons were heaving with birds. I didn’t do a full count but there were high numbers of duck and waders including, Dunlin, Redshank, Godwit and Grey plovers, wigeon and teal. I…

    • 9 Jan 2019
  • New year, new events on Havergate

    We have decided to change things around a bit in 2019 with a brand new events calendar.

    We will still be offering the normal first Saturday of the month ‘Explore Havergate Island’  trip (except May, June and July when the island is closed). This trip is a Non Guided trip where you are free to explore the hides and trails at your own pace. A guide will be present on the island should you prefer to stay with…

    • 14 Dec 2018
  • Team Work

    We have completed laying and fixing the rock fall netting on the new spillway! Thank you to all that helped-it is amazing what you can achieve with team work. In total it took us about 7 days over a 5 week period. So, after 3 months with 2 excavators, a tractor, 300 rolls of rockfall netting and 2300 pegs to fix it down. We have finished the project and Havergate can get back to its normal and peaceful self.

    Getting…

    • 12 Dec 2018
  • Natural Flood Management

    Its been a long slog, starting mid-September up until now but has been well worth it to 1) help protect the island against further damage from tidal surges by creating the lowered spillway and 2) to create an even better and new main lagoon that should encourage more birds to use the islands throughout the year and also make them easier to see from the hides. The photos below show off the amazing work done and the volunteer…

    • 3 Dec 2018
  • A busy couple of months.

    We are now coming to the end of the Havergate Island Surge and Climate change adaptation project, and what a busy couple of months it has been!  After the wall lowering was completed the diggers moved onto the lagoons to re-shape the existing small islands, create new ones and generally improve and enhance Main lagoon. They have been working really hard and it is amazing the difference we can see already! We have been…

    • 13 Nov 2018
  • A busy couple of months.

    We are now coming to the end of the Havergate Island Surge and Climate change adaptation project, and what a busy couple of months it has been!  After the wall lowering was completed the diggers moved onto the lagoons to re-shape the existing small islands, create new ones and generally improve and enhance Main lagoon. They have been working really hard and it is amazing the difference we can see already! We have been…

    • 13 Nov 2018
  • Guest blog by Mike - September

    Now the secret is out I would like to say a huge congratulations to our very own Mike Matthewson. Mike was successfully nominated for the presidents award (which he collected over the weekend) for the time  he has given to the RSPB. The prestigious RSPB presidents award recognises significant volunteer contribution to nature conservation and to the work of the RSPB.

    Mike is an outstanding example of an RSPB short term…

    • 24 Oct 2018
  • Havergate's wall lowering project - end of week 2

    It has been nearly 2 weeks since we started the wall lowering project (see last blog here https://bit.ly/2EiWApE) on Havergate and I can happily report that the diggers have so far been doing a great job. The wall has turned out to be a total of 600m in length, so a little shorter than anticipated, however this will not have any effect on the overall efficiency of the spillway.

    Once the diggers have finished work on…

    • 12 Oct 2018
  • Havergate's wall lowering project

    We have finally reached the moment in time where we have started our highly anticipated wall lowering project on Havergate Island.

    For those of you that do not know what we are planning to do, here is a very quick summery.

    We are now starting to witness the impact of more regular storms on the island combined with higher tides. We are finding that the banks around the island are eroding more noticeably, paths are…

    • 24 Sep 2018
  • Visit Havergate 2018

    Wow, what a weekend on the island. The migrants have really started to drop in recently. Our top counts over the weekend were bartailed godwit, greenshank, 21 grey plover, 33 ringed plover, 2 whimbrel, 4 turnstone, 11 common sandpiper, 14 spoonbill, 4 knot, 235 avocet, 45 oyster catcher, juvenile ruff, sanderling, 65 blacktailed godwits, 330 redshank, 140 dunlin, little stint, , 2 juvenile little ringed plover (good for…

    • 15 Aug 2018
  • Havergate Adventure 2018

    If you had read our previous blog post - Havergate Island Blog – June 29 – July 20 2018 written by our residential volunteer Mike, then he just may have inspired you to visit Havergate Island to see if you can see any of the amazing wildlife that he was lucky enough to have seen on his visit.

    This is the perfect time of year to explore our wild isle (the only island in Suffolk), and our special Havergate…

    • 30 Jul 2018
  • Guest Blog - Havergate Island, June 29 – July 20 2018

    Mike, our regular residential volunteer on Havergate, has kindly written a guest blog documenting his 3 weeks on the island. Mike does a fantastic job of monitoring and maintaining the island for the 3 weeks he is out there. Thanks Mike!

    Havergate Island Blog – June 29 – July 20 2018

    I thought that I had written a blog when I was on Havergate from 23 – 30 March, so I checked, but I hadn’t. So this one is…

    • 30 Jul 2018
  • Spoonbill Surprise

    We are now fast approaching our Summer Events, the first being the Spoonbill Surprise weekend on the 28 & 29 July. Well, I certainly had my very own Spoonbill Surprise when I was heading to the island yesterday. Heading down the river on the boat I spotted a Spoonbill feeding in the shallow water on the edge of the island. We normally see them loafing on the lagoons so it was great to see this one out in the open and…

    • 19 Jul 2018
  • Visit Havergate

    Have I ever mentioned that Havergate lays claim to being Suffolk’s only island?! It boasts a colourful history which spans centuries and attracts visitors - both avian and human - to its shingle shores each season. Havergate Island is such an important, magical and isolated reserve and many species rely heavily on the island and its rich ecosystem to survive and thrive. Havergate is not only home to some great birdlife…

    • 6 Jul 2018
  • June Update

    Forgive the lack of updates on the blog of recent times. This is mostly due to the last couple of months being amongst our busiest times of the year for our breeding birds.

    Although the island has been closed to visitors, that does not mean that time has stood still! plenty has been happening. Havergate has been awash with life and has come alive and green over the spring.

    We have been busy keeping tabs on the breeding…

    • 29 Jun 2018
  • It is wildlife after all….

    Wow, what a busy weekend! Our Havergate Hare weekend is always our most popular trip, and the one trip that gets me worried! Are the Hares going to be in their favourite spot? Are the hares going to be active? Are we even going see ANY Hares?!?!

    Well, they didn’t let us down. On Saturday we had up to 4 Hare’s at any one time happily chasing each other up and down the banks and posing amongst the gorse. Sunday, well Sunday…

    • 27 Mar 2018
  • A Great and Varied February

    February has been a crazy month for Havergate, and i'll go into whats been happening on the island throughout February a little further down. Firstly, I wanted to mention our brilliant Havergate Hare trips which are almost fully booked for March. We still have a couple of spaces available for Saturday 24th at 1pm, Sunday 25th at noon and 1pm. If you cant get booked onto this trip for March, don't worry as there are…

    • 13 Mar 2018
  • Trips and Events

    We had a fantastic day on our ‘Explore Havergate Island’ trip last Saturday. Amazingly it was a lovely calm day in between a few blustery days.

    The Hares were the most active I have seen them in a while – obviously gearing up for our upcoming Hare Events in March and April. We had at least 6 of the little chaps running in and around the gorsy area and were very accommodating to our visitors letting them…

    • 13 Feb 2018
  • February Update

    I am happy to report that Havergate has escaped the worst of the recent stormy weather with the only downside being me not being able to get out there as often as normal! However, apart from looking a bit windswept, we have had no damage to any of the infrastructure out there.

    Even though we have had to cancel a couple of work party days due to the weather, we are still on track to getting the new hide up and running…

    • 29 Jan 2018
  • A gulp of cormorants...

    I fear we have now reached that time of the year again where we have to huddle in the hides with our flask of coffee and wear 3 layers plus hats, scarfs and gloves. However, it is always worth it as it can be the best time of year to see the stunning wildlife that is out there. 

    We managed a full island count this week just in time for our visitor trip on Saturday to give anyone visiting an idea of what they might see…

    • 30 Nov 2017
  • Update from Havergate

    We were very lucky and had a lovely mild and calm day last week for our weekly work party on Havergate Island. We are making the most of these days as we know it is only going to get colder from now onwards and as you can imagine, it can get very wild out on the island! 

    As you can see from the picture below the team are cracking on removing one of our old huts which was damaged in the 2013 tidal surge. This hut removal…

    • 22 Nov 2017
  • Bygone Years

    Lyndsey is having technical problems this week, so she has asked me to post this for her

    Havergate lays claim to being Suffolk’s only island. It boasts a colourful history which spans centuries and attracts visitors - both avian and human - to its shingle shores each season.

    The island’s association with people goes back about 500 years and throughout that time Havergate has been managed, farmed and shaped by…

    • 10 Oct 2017
  • Isolated, atmospheric and magical

    Here is the last guest blog for this year from our residential volunteer Mike. He, as always, done a fantastic job of looking after the island, keeping an eye on our breeding birds and generally keeping it in top condition for us. Again, thank you for all of your help and support this year Mike- we look forward to seeing you again next year!  

    There is certainly something special about Havergate Island. Isolated, atmospheric…

    • 5 Sep 2017
  • Recently on Havergate....

    So now I can happily say the breeding season is well and truly over on Havergate (it has been for a while but I just haven’t gotten around to writing this until now) and we start looking forward to all the passage waders which have started to turn up in fantastic numbers.

    I will quickly give you a roundup of the breeding successes and failures on the island. The gulls which were on eggs from mid March with the…

    • 29 Aug 2017