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Walking the dog by the River Orwell
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Orwell View Barns Holiday Cottages Information
Enjoy walking across the marshes and watching wading birds, ducks and geese. The River Orwell is considered by some to be the most ornithologically diverse estuary in Suffolk. The mudflats are an important feeding area for estuary birds. Eleven species of wild fowl and waders can reach numbers of national importance.
The best time to see estuary birds is during the autumn and winter. In the case of waders, the Orwell is of international importance for Redshank.
As our marshes are situated in close proximity to both the Orwell and Stour and to the Suffolk Wildlife Trust Reserve on the Trimley Marshes, they are of vital importance for breeding, passage migrant and wintering waders and wildfowl. It is an offence under the Wildlife and Countryside Act of 1981 to take, damage, or destroy wild birds nests while they are in use, or their eggs.
We hope to welcome turtle doves back by enticing them with foraging areas of cultivated plots. These margins allow arable plants in the seed bank to germinate helping to provide the natural foraging habitat that turtle doves rely on for a source of food to replenish them after a long trip from their wintering grounds in West Africa. Arable plants such as chickweed and fumitory provide much needed food early on in the season for turtle doves looking to breed here in the UK. We also manage our hedgerows for wildlife providing several large scrubby sections which will provide some lucky turtle doves with suitable nesting habitat as well as food for over wintering birds with hedges heavy with berries.
110 acres of our permanent pasture are within the internationally acclaimed Orwell estuary SSSI and about 345 acres are within an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Within these areas can be found at least 8 species listed in the BAP, including Tawny and Little Owls, the cornbunting, yellowhammers, linnets and lapwing.
During the spring and autumn migration periods, good numbers of Snipe, Jack Snipe, Ruff, Bar and Black-tailed Godwit, Little Stint and Green Sandpiper frequent the wet pools whilst summer breeding birds include Avocet, Redshank, Lapwing, Reed Warbler, Sedge Warbler and the occasional Cettis Warbler.
Winter, depending on water coverage, brings in large numbers of Widgeon, Teal, Snipe and Brent Geese, while Bewick Swans, Bean Geese and the odd Bittern have made an appearance.
In the spring, Nightingales can be heard in the woods near Orwell View Barns and Hill House Farm. To hear the dawn chorus, visit in early April to mid May and take a packed breakfast on your early morning start. There are two owl boxes below Orwell View Barns.
Birds by barge on the Stour estuary with the RSPB throughout November, December and January, The 118 year old Thames Sailing Barge Victor provides a wonderful platform for a half day excursion with experts onboard to help you get the most out of bird-watching. Departs Ha'Penny Pier Harwich. email firstname.lastname@example.org or ring 01206391153