Hello!This is just a quick blog to let any potential visitors to our site between now and Sunday 8th December, that the Wangford Road is closed to traffic- see the image below. This closure will affect any attendees for our Ghosts of the Fens walk this Sunday (1 December) at 14:00.
Photo credit: Google Maps; Wangford Road (red marker)
There are still several routes into the reserve:
-Coming from the south, the Fiveways roundabout at Mildenhall is open as normal- if you head north from here on the A1065 and turn left at the staggered junction through the villages of Eriswell and Lakenheath, you can reach us.
-Coming from the north, the road south from Hockwold *** Wilton is open as normal so if you are travelling from the Brandon direction this might be the best option for you. From Brandon, if you head north to Weeting, then west to Hockwold, and south to us you can reach the reserve this way.
If you have any queries about travel do get in touch with us on 01842 863400 or via firstname.lastname@example.org
While i'm here- a quick update on wildlife- there has been a rather confident water rail on the Visitor Centre pond, as well as an abundance of robins who are determinedly staking their claim to the tray underneath the feeders and the surrounding area. At this time of year they can get very territorial, with puffed out chests, an upright stance, and plenty of singing, often in short bursts. This is the time when their red breasts really come in useful- a clear beacon to other robins to say 'I am here and this is my patch!'.
Our whooper swans continue to delight visitors, especially in the early morning, and several redshank and snipe are often visible with them, feeding in the muddy fringes. Forty seven lapwing were recorded here on 23 November too. Further down the reserve has been reliable for (up to five) great white egrets though it seems one bird likes to frequent the edges of the river, and can often be seen feeding in the bends of the river where it borders New Fen North. Two water pipits are still being reliably seen along the Washland footpath as well as several stonechat.I spent a very happy half hour on 24 November watching the feeders at the Pat Rolph photography station, where- for the first time in years since before their population plummeted- three beautiful greenfinches were munching away on the sunflower hearts. Here's to hoping they will become more common once again. They have always been one of my favourite birds- I love their colours and their attitude too- always seeming a bit crabby and unwilling to 'share' the ports of a feeder with other birds like goldfinches. Reed bunting, great spotted woodpecker and chaffinches are common down here, as is a water rail who likes to creep out from the scrub at the back to feed on what the other birds drop! He/She can be quite confident, even with onlookers admiring and taking photos! The vegetation at the back can often hold a couple of bullfinches- you can hear them calling to each other from within the willows- though I have yet to see them use the feeders.
Anyway, that's the main highlights for now. As usual, if anything unusual pops up we shall blog about it!
Visitor Experience Officer (Lakenheath Fen)
I was lucky enough to see a water rail stalking around in the reeds behind the photography station, and then, a little while later, I looked to the side and saw a stoat peeping up at me from under the wooden sidings!
Hi ialarmedalien,It's good to know what you saw- and lovely to hear about the stoat- when we do get sightings of these it tends to be by the Photography Station, I think they may breed in that area. That water rail is becoming a bit of a celebrity!Best wishes, Heidi
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