After what can only be described as a rather grim spring, we are finally seeing some major improvements in the weather. And that has to be good news for nature! We all know that cold, wet spells during the breeding season can be catastrophic for many birds and animals so a warm and dry period should bring some much needed relief. Also, the change should benefit insects which will of course help those other creatures that feed on them. Butterflies and dragonflies too will on the wing, brightening up our days spent outdoors!
Here at Leighton Moss visitors have been enjoying the re-opened hides and have welcomed the opportunity to get out to the Allen and Eric Morecambe Pools. Here, birdwatchers have been treated to sightings of up varying numbers of spoonbills (peaking at an astonishing 8!), great white egret, osprey, barn owl (photo by Jarrod Sneyd), Mediterranean gulls and of course the nesting avocets and black-headed gulls. Elsewhere on the reserve, bitterns have remained vocal and frequently visible, bearded tits have continued to show well and red deer, marsh harriers, black-tailed godwits, tawny owl and osprey have all entertained the crowds in recent days. The sounds of sedge, reed and Cetti's warblers fill the reedbeds and there are now lots of young birds from baby coots to marsh tit fledglings to enjoy around the reserve.
With restrictions having eased somewhat, we are now once again offering a small number of guided walks. Our Dawn Chorus walk was a great success and we have now added a couple of Birdounds for Beginners walks, led by the wonderful Andy Chapman. Taking place on Saturdays 5 June and 19 June, these two-hour guided walks will focus on bird sounds and how to identify who's doing what, and why! Pre-booking is essential and details can be found here.
With the shop, café, trails and hides all now open it does feel like we are getting back to some version of normality and it has been lovely welcoming so many new and familiar faces to Leighton Moss in recent weeks. We hope to you see you soon!
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