• Bees and wasps at The Lodge walk

    Bees and wasps of The Lodge
    Sunday 23 June 1.0 pm – 3.0 pm

    The Lodge is home to an amazing variety of bees including cuckoo, honey and bumble bees, along with wasps and the other creatures that prey and parasite on them. Several other insects found here even mimic different bees and wasps.
    Ecologist Bex Cartwright from the Bee Conservation Trust is leading this walk to discover these often hidden, but truly amazing…

    • 9 Jun 2019
  • Stonechat breeding success

    It's that time again when lots of young birds are appearing around the reserve and keeping their parents very busy collecting enough food for their hungry bills. Visitor Mark Collins sent me the excellent shots of a whitethroat carrying food to its nest at the weekend.

       Image credit: Mark  Collins

     We had some great news when three stonechat fledglings were seen on the new heath! The adults have been keeping well out…

    • 4 Jun 2019
  • Latest may sightings

    Although I am very lucky that I regularly hear and sometimes even see cuckoo's from my garden in Little Paxton, this morning I saw my first one at The Lodge this spring! It called from behind the extension car-park this morning and I watched as it flew into the large pine tree there. Brilliant!

     Cuckoo, image credit Ben Andrew.

    We had more good news when the hobby's, which have generally been quite elusive, were seen…

    • 21 May 2019
  • Delay to the Wild Play Trail opening.

    With half term approaching, just a reminder that we regret that the opening of the advertised Wild Play Trail at The Lodge has been delayed. We are now planning to open the trail ready for the school summer holidays.
    You can still enjoy den building, brass rubbing and activity sheets, as well as the lovely reserve walks.
    Very big apologies from us all at The Lodge

    • 21 May 2019
  • Upcoming talks and walks with RSPB Bedford Local Group

    Bedford RSPB local group 

    Meet at ARA club, Manton Lane Bedford MK41 7PF


    Thursday 16th May  7.30pm


    Cleo Small, Cleo is the RSPB’s Senior Policy Officer, 

    Global Seabird Programme, and will talk to us this evening on the

     ‘Campaign to save the Albatross’


    Thursday 23rd May    7 pm- Evening walk Free to all


    Harold & Odell Country Park 

    meet at 7 pm in the car park MK43 7DS


    Suitable for Experts and Novices…

    • 13 May 2019
  • Late arrival of the spotted flycatchers

    We are hoping that the spotted flycatchers will be seen here this week. Although they are the generally the last summer migrant to arrive in the UK, they are normally on the reserve around the 7th-10 May, so are later this year. There was a report a couple of weeks ago, but this was exceptionally early and there were no further sightings after this.

    Hobby's have been seen on occasions, but not on a regular basis yet. Th…

    • 13 May 2019
  • Optics at The Lodge

    Pop along to The Lodge shop on Bank Holiday Monday to see and try out before you buy the latest in optics

    • 5 May 2019
  • Dawn Chorus Sunday 5 May Fully Booked

    The Lodge Dawn Chorus- fully booked!
    Sorry, there are no more spaces left on our Dawn Chorus this Sunday.

    • 2 May 2019
  • Notice of delay to opening of Wild Play trail

    The Lodge Wild Play trail notice

    We are very sorry, but the new trail that we advertised as opening ready for the May Bank Holiday weekend, as part of the Greensand Country festival has been delayed and will not now be open until later in the season.
    We are very disapointed ourselves as we were so looking forward to having the trail ready for our family visitors. We will of course let you know as soon as we have a new…

    • 2 May 2019
  • The first cuckoo!

    Yesterday a cuckoo was calling, heard from the visitor car park This is the first date for one on the reserve this year, although there was a bird calling near the southern boundary on Saturday. There was also a report of a lesser whitethroat around the new heath.

    We are still waiting for the first hobby to be reported....

    • 24 Apr 2019
  • Hitchin & Letchworth RSPB Local Group Martin Johnson on ‘The Search for the Bengal Tiger’

    Hitchin & Letchworth RSPB Local Group have a talk by Martin Johnson on ‘The Search for the Bengal Tiger’ on Friday May 3rd. Martin will tell us about his search for this rare mammal, and also about the other wildlife he saw in India. At The Settlement, Letchworth SG6 4UB, visitors very welcome, £3.

    Then on Sunday May 19th we have an all day coach trip to Frensham Common and Ponds. This beautiful…

    • 23 Apr 2019
  • Easter weekend

    It's been an incredibly busy few days as the sun beats down for the Easter holidays and children (and adults) take part in our Wild things Easter migration and activity station trail!

    We've had quite a few sightings of common lizards and grass snakes at The Lodge in the warm sunshine this week. Visitor Mark Mulrooney sent me this photo of a grass snake he came across along the trails. Can you spot it?

    We are still…

    • 21 Apr 2019
  • Spring creeping in

    The first whitethroat of the year was calling at The Lodge yesterday, another addition to the spring migrant list. We are still looking for the first wheatear, swallows and sand martins here, although they are coming in across the country now.

    There is plenty of evidence of birds preparing to nest, with the mistle thrush pictured collecting nesting material at the hide. A few siskins are still being seen and heard, so 

    • 10 Apr 2019
  • One more migrant arrives

    The first whitethroat of the year was calling on the new heath briefly today, while a male stonechat moved along the brambles in the distance.

    • 9 Apr 2019
  • Willow warblers singing

    It's been very gloomy for the last couple of days and migrants have been slow to arrive in the cold easterly winds. There's been two or three willow warblers singing in the last few days, a welcome sound of early spring, but we are still waiting to add any more birds to the arriving migrant list!

    it could all change very quickly though, I'll keep you posted!

     John Bridges (rspb-images.com)

    • 8 Apr 2019
  • Bedford RSPB local group talk Thursday 18th April 7.30 pm Ken Davies, ‘Rutland Water Ospreys’ -

    Bedford RSPB local group Meet at ARA club, Manton Lane Bedford MK41 7PF. Thursday 18th April 7.30 pm Ken Davies, ‘Rutland Water Ospreys’ - Ken, a member of the Osprey conservation team, tells us more about these magnificent birds and the RutlandWater Osprey conservation programme. Suitable for Experts and Novices,

    RSPB membership not essential. Entrance fee, group members £1 Guest £2 annual group membership…

    • 8 Apr 2019
  • Migrants coming in

    We have been enjoying a very warm and sunny day before the forecasts predict a spell of winter will be returning for the week ahead.

    Today a male stonechat in its full summer finery was spotted on the new heath. A couple of linnets were also roving around together, hopefully scouting out nest sites amongst the gorse.

    Blackcaps and especially chiffchaff's are calling from every corner of the reserve now and it can only be…

    • 1 Apr 2019
  • A 'gusty' week to come....

    The spell of almost summer like weather that we had in February seems a distant memory at the moment, and these strong winds and sharp showers aren't the best conditions for bird watching!

    Still, in the quieter moments this week we have seen the crossbills in flight across the new heath, a grey wagtail has been regular around the hide pools and HQ buildings and gardens, while a few siskins are passing through. We are…

    • 13 Mar 2019
  • Race for Wildlife, Sunday 10 March 10 am - approx. 12:00 noon

    Race for Wildlife, Sunday 10 March 10 am - approx. 12:00 noon

    Please be aware that the re-arranged run will take place this Sunday and the main trails and drive will be busy while the runners complete the race during this time.

    Thank you.

    • 5 Mar 2019
  • Update on solar panel car ports

    The work to install car ports in the over-flow car park at The Lodge has been delayed by a couple of days. The work will now start on Wednesday 5 March and is very likely now to extend into the following week. The car ports and installation equipment will be delivered on Tuesday, so the overflow and other areas of the car park will be closed to allow access to lorries.
    Car-parking capacity will be reduced during the works…
    • 4 Mar 2019
  • First day of the meteorological spring

    After a few days away I've returned to find the sunny spring weather is slipping away, although it's still pretty good for early March.
    As this is the first day of the meteorological spring, (20 March 2019 is the first day of the astronomical spring) here is a picture of a skylark hovering and singing over the Sandy Ridge field, to remind us of the amazing February we've just had - and that spring proper is …

    • 1 Mar 2019
  • Solar panel car ports at The Lodge. Advance notice of installation works week commencing March 4.

    Car ports with solar panels are being installed in the over-flow car park at The Lodge . The work will start on Monday 4 March and is expected to be completed by Friday 8, although it may extend into the following week.
    Car-parking capacity will be reduced during the works.
    Why are we doing this project?
    Climate change is one of the greatest threats to birds, wildlife and people worldwide and the…
    • 22 Feb 2019
  • 20 February 2019 RSPB The Lodge nature reserve and gardens at Sandy awarded a prestigious VisitEngland Welcome Award.

    RSPB The Lodge nature reserve and gardens at Sandy has been awarded a prestigious VisitEngland Welcome Award.

     VisitEngland has today announced the winners of its 2018 Attractions Accolades recognising the quality of visitor experiences across England.

    Following their annual assessment by VisitEngland, 76 attractions have been awarded an accolade, based on the score they obtained following their Visitor Attraction Quality…

    • 20 Feb 2019
  • Is this really spring?

    It really is hard to believe it's still only February. Birds are singing, flowers are blooming and butterflies, bees and insects are on the wing on the bright sunny days we've had recently. I have seen reports of house martins arriving across the country - even in Scotland!... and numerous swallows arriving around the coast, especially in the South-West. Our regular visiting photographer Rob Gilmore has captured some…

    • 19 Feb 2019
  • End of week report

    After the snow and ice of last week it's been a much milder week. The wind took it's toll on one our bird feeding stations, where the timber 'goal posts' completely collapsed! We hope to fix this next week. The milder conditions have meant for a quieter week for birds as well, with the bramblings seemingly departed and no views of the crossbills that we know of since last Saturday. We did have a good report…

    • 8 Feb 2019