Unfortunately, due to an electrical fault, the RSPB Frampton Marsh Visitor Centre will be closed for the next few days. The car park, footpaths and hides will remain open. We apologise for any inconvinience this may have caused.
Please continue to check this blog page for further updates.
Best wishes for the New Year,
Simon and the Frampton team.
I hope you are all ready for tomorrow's festivities! Here at RSPB Frampton Marsh, we have been providing a little Christmas dinner to some of our hungry birds. For the last month, we have been throwing seed out infront of our visitor centre for the finches, buntings and sparrows. This has been very beneficial for all concerned. The birds have had some easy meals without having to waste valuable energy finding natural food, and visitors to the reserve have had fantastic close views of these beautiful birds.
Black-tailed godwits have also taken full advantage of the seed on offer. These stunning waders usually probe their extra long bills into the soft mudflats of The Wash, in search of tiny little bugs. Since this cold snap began, many wading birds have found it difficult to probe into the solid ground, leaving the seed we have put out as their only alternative.
We also made our own apple tree for the wintering thrushes and starlings. We took a large branch from a dead hawthorn bush, pushed it into the ground, and stuck apples on the thorns. This has been very popular with the starlings, but has unfortunately not attracted any of the waxwings that have been seen near by.
All of this food on offer attracts other wildlife to the area. I was surprised to see two little fluffy mammals under the bird feeder too. Cleverly, they had set up home right next to the feeders.
Brown rats are not as dirty as you may think. They just had really bad public relations with that whole Plague thing!! (I think that was mainly the black or ship rat.) Most mammals are hard to see in the wild. They tend to be very scared of people, and they do not have the ability to fly away like birds can (apart from bats, of course!!) So to see a rat in the wild is just as pleasing as seeing a fox, a hedhehog or a wood mouse.
Feeding the birds has meant that I have been able to take reasonable pictures with my little compact camera. Why not put some feeders in your own garden and see what turns up? It is a good time to get the birds used to your garden ready for the Big Garden Bird Watch on 29th and 30th January. to learn more about BGBW, click on the link on the main menu page, or come along to RSPB Frampton Marsh where you can find all of the information you will need. While you are there, have a coffee in the cosy visitor centre, and watch nature at it's best. There is a always a great chance of seeing 20 or so of these little fellows.
Tree sparrow. Unfortunately, these pretty farmland birds are in severe decline. Come and have a look at them while you still can.
Thanks for reading. Have a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.
From Simon and the whole Frampton team.
That’s right, not only does the Visitor Centre offer a bit of shelter from the wind but its is now a heated bird watching hide, with greenfinches, yellow hammers, and black-tailed godwits feeding within metres of the windows! The engineers spent yesterday working away, and we now have the capability to store electricity from the generator in batteries which can power the lights, hot water, and the under floor heating.
But some of us did brave the cold this afternoon for a Talon Spotting guided walk. Due to the freezing conditions, the reserve was very quiet from a wildlife perspective but we did see and listen for both curlew and redshank. We saw two marsh harriers, but very distant, hunting out near the river’s edge. Small groups of shelduck, mute swans, and pink-footed geese also flew over. And Simon (Visitor and Publicity Officer) kept us entertained with interesting facts such as the mute swan is the heaviest flying bird, and the female marsh harrier has a wing span of roughly 5 foot but weighs only 1.5lbs.