Weather Display Live
You need to install v8, or greater, of Flash Player from Adobe and have javascript enabled to view Weather Display Live.
close weather panel
separator

Blog

LIFE+ breeds new life

Aug
21
2014


The EU-funded LIFE+ project on the Ness is now complete and the final report has been published. We are delighted to report that 2014 has been a hugely successful breeding year, highlighted by Common Tern chicks fledging here for the first time in 50 years!
Common Tern Picture: North East Wildlife

Common Tern
Picture: North East Wildlife

Breeding birds play a huge role in the diverse wildlife on the Ness. Sometimes, we ask visitors to avoid an area or a certain part of a route to avoid disturbance, and we are grateful to all those who help us give the birds some space - it has certainly paid off.

We have had more Redshank and Lapwing chicks fledging than in recent years, whilst areas cleared of rush and rank grass in the late autumn and the creation of a network of foot-drains (linear scrapes) in 2013 also proved attractive to the Lapwings, with juveniles regularly seen from the red route feeding on invertebrates around the muddy edges.

Three Oystercatcher chicks have fledged so far and are the first known to do so on site since 2006. Avocets have also had their most productive year for a while with 47 pairs and at least 18 juveniles fledging.

Avocet and chicks

Avocet and chicks

One of the highlights of the year has been the return of Common Tern to Orford Ness as a breeding species. At the time of writing, two chicks have fledged and another is close to doing so. Since the 1960's, the only breeding record was an unsuccessful attempt on King's Marsh in 2012, so the chicks are probably the first in 50 years, and we are absolutely delighted to see them here.

The new lagoons on King's Marsh held over 90 pairs of Black-headed Gull, many of the breeding pairs of Avocets and also at least 15 pairs of Common Terns.
As water levels start to drop, flocks of Dunlin, Godwit, and Spoonbill are being attracted in to feed and roost on the exposed mud whilst large numbers of Little Egret on the marshes give the site a rather exotic feel.

 









Advanced options
Havergate's rare and interesting spriders
Lyndsey, site warden for Havergate Island takes up spider hunting..