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Creating and conserving habitats through land management at Sculthorpe Moor


Image: Steve Norris. Arial shot of the wetlands area in December 2020

As work continues on new parts of the reserve Nigel Middleton, Conservation Officer & Reserve Manager for the Hawk and Owl Trust has reported sightings of a Great White Egret, Oystercatchers, and Lapwings in the recently created wetlands area. For a couple of days Pintails have recently frequented the site and Teals have also been present, but as the water level drops these will move on to more suitable territory.

Although Sculthorpe has Little White Egret sightings, the appearance of a Great White Egret at the reserve is markedly exciting. This species, although not uncommon, is being seen more and more across the UK. Particularly in Spring and Summer as this is a migratory bird. 


Image: Lilly Dollman. The wetlands in summer - June 2020

Currently, in development (and not accessible to the public just yet!) the large waterbed of the Wetlands has been created with a water control sluice. After recent flooding at the Sculthorpe Reserve, the sluice was used to allow water levels to drop and reveal exposed patches of gravel. This has resulted in the perfect environment for Lapwings to hopefully thrive. We will update you on their future success on our new Wetlands.

Also a migratory bird, a deceit of wintering Lapwings can be a very impressive sight. Particularly in the Somerset Levels where numbers can become quite large, sometimes Lapwings can be seen at our Shapwick Reserve. With the birds preferring wetlands and spring-sown crops we only ever anticipate that the birds will be with us for breeding seasons before heading elsewhere for Winter.

As the Sculthorpe Reserve presents more and more opportunities for habitat creation it seemingly demonstrates the success of land management for conservation. If you would like to contribute to our wetlands project or donate to our ongoing work please visit: https://cafdonate.cafonline.org/9452#!/DonationDetails

Image: Martin Hayward-Smith. The start of the wetlands project at Sculthorpe Moor in September 2019

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