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  • Blog Post: Stoats, hobbies and ravens top the Monday bill

    We've had a lot of stoat action at The Lodge in recent weeks, and today a couple were playing around beside the hide pools, then suddenly jumping in for a quick splash about. Tim Felce was in the hide with his wife at the time and took the following amazing images... A party of six ravens were...
  • Blog Post: Showy bramblings

    The bramblings are proving a large draw for birders and photographers - and generally apearing under the feeders to keep everyone happy! If they aren't about there is plenty of other activity; with a constant flow of coal, blue and great tits, greenfinches,goldinches and chaffinches, dunnocks, blackbirds...
  • Blog Post: What's happening at the entrance?

    There is a lot of activity at the entrance to The Lodge at the moment, with two seperate contract works taking place. Traffic lights are currently being installed at the entrance to make access to the reserve safer for visitors and staff, and for people using the bridleway that cuts across the busy and...
  • Blog Post: Finch flocks slowly arriving

    There was a noticeable change in the amount of 'new' birds around The Lodge today and during the week. Around the feeders at The Gatehouse, greenfinch numbers have built up, a female brambling has shown at times, and a few reed buntings and yellowhammers were in a mixed flock along the low birches...
  • Blog Post: November starts

    It's a foggy day to start November, with the sun trying hard to break through at times and it's still very mild. The fungi foray went off in the expert hands of leader Alan Outen and The Beds and Herts Fungi group, and with the variety of fungi recorded here this year, it should be a very successful...
  • Blog Post: Five ravens

    Just packing up to go home and Peter Bradley, our Senior Site Manager spotted five ravens soaring directly over the Gatehouse. A great end to the working day! I haven't had any reports of the hobbies since one flew over The Lodge gardens on Sunday- so they may have started their long journey back...
  • Blog Post: A few winter migrants appear at the Lodge

    On Sunday, two ravens were seen flying together and later in the day, I noticed a raven mobbing a buzzard over the Galley Hill end of the new heath. As we haven't had any signs that they are nesting on the reserve, this is interesting behaviour at this time. Are they starting to nest later this year...
  • Blog Post: Birds in June

    It's a while since I've written just about the birds, so here we are! We are hopeful that the spotted flycatcher's are still nesting in a dead birch along the trail to the hide. They seem to have abandoned their original nest which was in the same general area, and a regular visitor told...
  • Blog Post: Have a very Merry Christmas- from The Lodge team

    Have a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New year- from all of us at The Lodge and RSPB Three Counties- thanks for joining us on our community blog this year and hope to see you on our amazing nature reserve in 2014! If you are popping in to enjoy a walk and to spot some wildlife over the festive...
  • Blog Post: November draws to a close

    We are still waiting for winter to take a grip and a movement of birds to follow. November has more of an autumnal than a winter feeling, and trees are still glowing golden on sunny days. I was at The Lodge over the weekend, and the main action was from the mistle thrushes and jays playing noisy chasing...
  • Blog Post: Winter arriving

    If the forecasters are right, then winter will be arriving overnight and temperatures are going to plummet - with a chance of some snow as well. It certainly hasn't felt like mid-November so far. The good news is that we might get an influx of winter birds, as it's been very quiet over the last...
  • Blog Post: Young ravens

    We were really pleased when the raven's fledged from their nest on the hillfort recently. This is the second consecutive year that these impressive birds have bred at The Lodge.Visitors have been seeing the raven family really well as they fly around the hillfort and New Heath areas, 'cronking'...
  • Blog Post: Spotted flycatchers return

    With all the fun of the Spring Fair now over, my binoculars are back in hand and I've even managed a couple of walks out on the reserve this week. Summer really began yesterday and the reserve looked glorious with trees and flowers in full bloom and the whole place looked radiant in the warm sunshine...
  • Blog Post: After the hols....

    The country returned to work and school today and we've passed Easter, the Royal Wedding, a Dawn Chorus walk and a Bank Holiday with the sun shining throughout! It has been very blustery over the last few days however, but it is calm sunny and settled again now.Bird highlights over the holiday have...
  • Blog Post: Winter arrives

    The reserve looks a lot different now then when I last posted a blog , as the winter weather finally arrived in force. We had over 6 inches of snow at the weekend and there is still a lot of laying snow that has frozen, making the paths very icy and slippery. We have put up signs advising against walking...
  • Blog Post: Birds and Easter news

    It may be a cold and dull Easter break, but here on the the reserve we have been really busy. Plenty of families have come along to take part in the Easter trail and we've been dashing out searching the shops for the last few creme eggs in the county to give as rewards! We;ll have had around 300...
  • Blog Post: Osprey still around

    When an osprey was reported to us well over a week ago, we were quite amazed, but this juvenile is still being seen on a regular basis.even though we are now into November! It seems to use the trees around the hillfort on the reserve to perch in, making sorties down to the local fishing lakes where it...
  • Blog Post: Birds of prey over the hillfort

    We have a group from the Beds,Bucks and Oxon Wildlife Trust on a visit to The Lodge today. I took them for a wander over the new heath to show off our heather, which is looking amazing this year. After leaving them to complete the trail, they came back happy after seeing hobbies, ravens and buzzards...
  • Blog Post: A nice children's group visit, some birds and lots of sunshine...

    Although the local weather forecast looks bad every day (again!) this week, we actually had a really nice sunny, hot spell for a large part of the day.We were taking a group of children from Keech, in Luton, down the main path to experience the reserve and in a short time we had seen ravens, two lovely...
  • Blog Post: Easter-birds and trail.

    It may be a cold and dull Easter break, but here on the the reserve we have been really busy. Plenty of families have come along to take part in the Easter trail and we've been dashing out searching the shops for the last few creme eggs in the county to give as rewards! We;ll have had around 300...
  • Blog Post: A 'fayre' few birds around at the weekend

    Phew...it was a a really busy weekend at The Lodge and we are just getting our breath back! Over 2,800 visitors came to the reserve to visit the Christmas Fayre, enjoy the trails and spot some good birds in mostly sunny conditions. The osprey was seen on both days, on one occcasion directly over the...
  • Blog Post: Hail the birds...

    It was a good weekend for bird sightings at The Lodge, we had a brilliant male brambling drinking down at the hide pools ( one seen today at the shop feeders as well), a male merlin dashed quick and low across the new heath, near the drive, and a cuckoo was seen and heard on several occasions.The ravens...
  • Blog Post: Long distant migrants

    Visitors come from many parts of the UK to see The Lodge, but not normally for a day visit from Scotland! Yesterday, RSPB members Violet and Nicky caught the plane from Edingburgh to Luton, hired a car to drive to Sandy and spent the day enjoying the reserve- and the lovely sunshine- for Violet's...
  • Blog Post: Ravens breed again

    After last year's successful breeding by ravens at The Lodge, we have been eagerly awaiting to see if they would breed here again this year. Today, 3 young ravens have been seen around the hillfort, with their parents noisily and actively watching over them. Excellent news! A pair of hobbies have...
  • Blog Post: Calm after the storm.

    It was certainly a day to stay indoors in the dry yesterday wasn't it? Although it was understandably very quiet at The Lodge, one brave birder did report seeing seven wheatears on Sandy Ridge. It's a world away from the wet and windy conditions today and the birds have been notching up. We started...