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Blashford Bulletin February 2019

 

Blashford Starlings-by-Jim-DayBlashford Lakes is getting a makeover! Blashford-Lapwing-Ian-Cameron-ReidThe unique mix of habitats at the Wildlife Trust nature reserve is home to a range of wildlife from kingfishers and otters to our famous great white egret, Walter. Soon visitors will be able to enjoy looking for and learning about our iconic wildlife and more besides from our new and much improved facilities.

Thanks to generous donations from the local community and funding from Veolia Environment Trust, we are able to renovate parts of the reserve to make it as welcoming as it can be for people and wildlife.

We have begun work on a number of changes and you may notice some parts of the reserve are inaccessible or currently not looking their best. However, this is only temporary and the results will be a vastly improved and altogether better nature reserve.

Here is what we have in store…

Blashford-Snipe-Ian-Cameron-Reid•  A brand new bird hide – this will be a much bigger, more flexible space overlooking Ibsley Water than the existing Tern Hide it replaces. The new hide will have a green roof perfect for pollinators and will provide panoramic views so you can get the best look at the lakes’ wonderful wildlife.

•  A second pond and a new sensory garden – these additions will provide new habitat for wildlife and more accessible pond dipping areas for visiting groups of children and adults.

•  A welcome hut and more seating – a new welcome hut will be manned by volunteers who will greet visitors and answer questions about the wildlife. We will also introduce more seating and picnic tables.

•  A new wildlife discovery trail and improved signage – we are creating a new discovery trail with beautiful willow sculptures and chainsaw carvings for visitors to enjoy. New and improved signs will guide visitors and provide more information about the reserve’s wildlife.

•  A new elevated viewpoint – this will be beside the main car park to give panoramic views across Ibsley Water, ideal for viewing starling murmurations and other gatherings of birds.

We’re very excited about the improvements to Blashford Lakes; it is such a special place and we hope the new developments will help more people experience and appreciate the wonderful wildlife on our doorstep.

To help the birds through the last of Winter why not join us to weave a willow bird feeder on Monday 18th February from 10.30am until 12noon. Please telephone 01425 472760 to book your space, cost £5 per feeder.

The Blashford Lakes Project is a partnership between Bournemouth Water, New Forest District Council and Wessex Water. The reserve is managed by Hampshire & Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust, a charity that aims to protect local wildlife and inspire people.

For information on upcoming events visit our website: www.hiwwt.org.uk or phone: 01425 472760. For up-to-date wildlife information visit our blog:
blashfordlakes.wordpress.com.