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  • Blog Post: Spring and Artists Fair- getting closer....

    Only six days to go until The Lodge Spring and Artist's Fair begins! We've got a great variety of stallholders and artists coming along and I've listed them all below. Hope you can make it here on Sunday. Catering by Le Café Crepe and ice-creams and snacks, wraps and sandwiches...
  • Blog Post: The Lodge welcomes the Biking Birder

    Gary Prescott, the Biking Birder has been to The Lodge on his RSPB fundraising tour of every RSPB reserve. The sun was shining as we went from the Gatehouse to HQ and a great reception was waiting to greet him ! Best of luck to Gary and many thanks from us all at The Lodge! Gary is now at Rye Meads and...
  • Blog Post: Bluebells are blooming

    One of the sp ring highlights at The Lodge is the wonderful display of bluebells on the path to the gardens. It seems that it's becoming more and more popular to come and enjoy these sweet scented flowers and last week a Canadian lady, who was staying in Cambridge on holiday, called me as she'd...
  • Blog Post: At last, a great image of the lesser spott!

    I've been waiting for a good picture of our lesser spotted- woodpecker, and now I've got one! Ray Valpier took this brilliant shot, so a very big thanks to him. The first cuckoo of the year was calling here this morning - exactly the same date as last year!
  • Blog Post: Lesser spotted woodpecker and new spring arrivals

    Although it can be a frustrating search for many - the lesser spotted woodpecker is still around and the lucky few ( including me this morning! ) have had views of it working through the birches, mainly in the area to the W of the pylons at the bottom of the Sandy Ridge trail. It seems to be best seen...
  • Blog Post: Youngster finds the goodies!

    A father and young son popped into the shop late this afternoon for some ID advice. The lad had shots on his camera of a pair of bramblings, several lesser redpolls and a female linnet that he'd taken around the pond at the hide! They'd also seen nuthatch, great spotted woodpecker, stock dove...
  • Blog Post: Early spring birds are arriving.

    Just checking on the Bird News forums and there is plenty of activity around the country, with wheatears, garganey, osprey, swallow and sand martins all arriving over the last week. No reports of any early migrants at The Lodge yet, but we should get the first chiffchaff or maybe a wheatear on Sandy...
  • Blog Post: 25 years working at The Lodge!

    Two of our staff members at The Lodge reached their 25th anniversary working for the RSPB this week, Anne Watson, who is now the retail shop manager and Linda Pallister, sales assistant, both joined in the same week in 1990 and have worked together at the RSPB shop at Sandy ever since they started. RSPB...
  • Blog Post: Stoats in the snow

    The main action on the reserve away from the busy bird feeders has been the regular sightings of a stoat around the Gatehouse. This little creature is often seen whizzing around in pursuit of an unfortunate rabbit - which it invariably catches - and today it charged through the snow and caught another...
  • Blog Post: Snow on Sandy

    We arrived at The Lodge this morning to find much more snow than we expected. It seems that most of the areas south of us had none at all, but I went out with the camera this morning so I have proof of how white it was here! Although the feeders are busy and bustling with lots of chaffinches, tits...
  • Blog Post: Big Garden Birdwatch events

    The RSPB's Big Garden Birdwatch will soon be here again this weekend, and the team from The Lodge will be at Jordans Mill on Saturday 24 January for a day of family activities- with face painting, fat ball making, guided birdwatching walks, info on Giving Nature a Home and an actual Big Garden Birdwatch...
  • Blog Post: Great birding at The Lodge this morning

    A great morning for birding at The Lodge; a couple of bullfinches, a woodcock, a grey wagtail at the hide, fifty + yellowhammers with a few linnets, fieldfare, song thrush, and over the road on Sandy Heath - mixed flocks of over 650 reed buntings, linnets, yellowhammers,with around a dozen skylarks,...
  • Blog Post: Discovery Day October 26

    I had a week away in the Lake District last week, and three great birds turned up in Bedfordshire! Firstly, a hoopoe at Willington, then even better (or rarer), a lesser grey shrike on nearby Biggleswade Common and then a dotterel, found by our very own Richard Bashford at Radwell pits. Luckily I did...
  • Blog Post: Hairy shield-bugs and hobbies

    Everyday now we wonder if the hobbies will head off on the start of their migration, but at least one bird is still lingering around the new heath and was seen several times today. Eight or nine buzzards were up in the air together around mid - day, although rather distant and hard to see in the hazy...
  • Blog Post: Peacock and butterfly extravaganza

    The hot July has bought us the welcome bonus of large numbers of butterflies and other flying creatures to the reserve. Flocks of peacocks in particular are quite amazing, with several hundred on Sandy Ridge alone. Scarcer species, such as purple hairstreak and silver- washed fritillary are being spotted...
  • Blog Post: Outdoor summer theatre is coming soon- Pantaloons time again!

    It's getting closer to summer outdoor theatre time at The Lodge. Vibrant and quirky touring group The Pantaloons are performing Shakespeare's The Tempest on Aug 2 and 3 and then at the end of the month, returning with a History of Britain ...on Aug 30. In true Pantaloons tradition the show will...
  • Blog Post: Snakes and spott's

    Anthea, our Monday morning Visitor Centre volunteer had a surprise today as she stood outside the building, when a two foot grass snake slithered across the path towards the heath. There have been a few sightings here lately -I even managed to see one myself! The spotted flycatchers are settling down...
  • Blog Post: Wildlife art day at The Lodge

    Local artist Steve Kershaw will be painting the wildlife of The Lodge and showing his artwork here on Sun 13 July. Steve will be set up outside The Visitor Centre between 11 am and 3 pm (weather dependent) and have framed originals, prints and cards for sale , so come along and say hello and take a look...
  • Blog Post: Butterflies and insects abound

    As the breeding season draws to a close (for most birds anyway) bird life Is now quietening down and the morning dawn chorus is over for another year. There's always some bird action though, a large group of swifts and several swallows were swooping over the new heath today and I watched as an adult...
  • Blog Post: Toads, snakes and birds!

    I was pleasantly surprised to hear and see a cuckoo today. They tend to go quiet and stop calling at this stage of the summer- and some are already making their way back across Europe to their wintering grounds in Africa. A pair of hobbies are around the new heath, but are fairly elusive at times this...
  • Blog Post: The Spring Fair is nearly here.....

    Just a few days to go now and it will be the Spring Fair at The Lodge! Join us on Sunday 1 June between 10 am and 5 pm to browse through the stalls and then enjoy the work of the Bedfordshire Artist Network Group. Youngsters can make a pin badge and see the amazing owl pellet man in action, and there...
  • Blog Post: Weekend walks

    The Dawn Chorus at The Lodge may be fully booked, but it's followed at 10am by our Birds For Beginners walk. If you want to know what the bird is that you have seen or can here calling, or how to get the best out of your optics- then this is the walk for you. Call 01767 680541 for more details and...
  • Blog Post: A good week for wildlife

    It's only Wednesday but we've had some great images of wildlife taken at The Lodge this week. It's been a poor year for seeing bramblings, with low numbers in the UK, but Malcolm Houseden took this image of a lovely male at the hide on Tuesday. We, and others have been looking , but it hasn't...
  • Blog Post: Rainbows and rain showers

    We are heading very quickly now towards March and between the rain showers and rainbows it feels like spring is really on the way. Bright snowdrops can still be enjoyed around the reserve and gardens at The Lodge and daffodils are starting to add a splash of welcome colour. Buds are appearing on the...
  • Blog Post: Give nature a home-make a nest box with us.

    Here at The Lodge we have our own nest box making day on Saturday 22nd. It's a hands-on day for the youngsters (although the parents often do the hard work!) and it's a great way of learning a little about how birds nest and make their homes- and how we can help then in our own gardens. A perfect...