You can now book your guided boat tour online before you visit . Glide along on an electric boat learning all about Martin Mere whilst spotting for kingfishers, fish, tawny owls and herons. The boat seats 8 and can accommodate wheelchairs. Click on Canoe safari on the experience page to start your wetland adventure.X
This weeks sightings include:Ron BarkerGadwallTealShovelerTufted DuckLapwingAvocetGrey HeronGreat Black-Backed GullMarsh HarrierKingfisher HideCetti's WarblerReed BuntingTree SparrowLittle EgretHale Hide / Raines Observatory / Discovery Hide / Gladstone HideWigeonGadwallTufted DuckLapwingOystercatcherAvocetLittle GrebeGreat Crested GrebeLesser Black-Backed GullMute SwanCommon TernMediterranean GullJanet KearGreat Spotted WoodpeckerDunnockKingfisherReed BuntingBullfinchHarrier HidePochardTufted DuckGreat Crested GrebeLittle EgretMute SwanReed BuntingCetti's WarblerCuckooUnited Utilities / Gordon TaylorWigeonTealShovelerLapwingRuffAvocetOystercatcherRedshankCommon TernLittle Ringed PloverGrey HeronBlackcapReed WarblerWheatearMarsh HarrierHareWe also have numerous goslings, ducklings and black headed gull chicks out on the reserve too!Feature Image of a Great Crested Grebe
Many of our Canada and Greylag goslings have hatched, and can be seen following their parents around on the Mere, and at United Utilities, Gordon Taylor, Harrier, and Ron Barker hides. We have several birds currently nesting on the Mere, including avocets, common terns, and black-headed gulls. Tufted ducks, oystercatchers, and a little egret can also be seen there. A blackcap was seen in the reedbed from Harrier Hide and a cuckoo can also be heard. Several waders can be viewed from Gordon Taylor hide, including avocets, oystercatchers and a redshank. We have various passerine birds around the reserve. This includes our resident blue tits, great tits, and finches, as well as reed buntings, stonechats, dunnocks, pied wagtails, and warblers. This week's survey gave us 45 butterflies of 7 different species, including the speckled wood, brimstone, holly blue, and wall butterfly. Dragonflies and damselflies are also starting to appear, with banded demoiselles and azure damselflies mostly found along the track to Gordon Taylor hide.This week's feature photo is of a speckled wood butterfly.
This week's sightings include:Ron Barker HideWhooper SwanCanada GooseBlack-Headed Gull2 GarganeysShelduckSnipeOystercatcherAvocetMarsh HarrierCuckooHareKingfisher HideBullfinchGoldfinchGreenfinchBlue TitGreat TitRobinDiscovery / Gladstone / Hale / Raines HidesCanada GoosePink-Footed GooseGreat Crested GrebeLittle EgretCommon TernMediterranean GullBlack-Headed GullShelduckTufted DuckWigeonAvocetOystercatcherCommon SandpiperKestrelJanet Kear HideGoldfinchGreenfinchBlue TitGreat TitTree SparrowShelduckHarrier Hide / ReedbedMute SwanCanada GooseBlack-Headed GullTufted DuckLittle EgretGrasshopper warblerCetti's WarblerSedge WarblerShort-Eared OwlWater RailUnited Utilities / Gordon Taylor HidesCanada GooseShelduckShovelerLapwingGolden PloverAvocetOystercatcherRedshankSnipeCommon TernBlack-Headed GullLittle EgretSkylarkGoldfinchStonechatSedge WarblerMarsh HarrierRoe DeerHareFeature photo of a redshank by Jimmy Parker
This week's sightings include:Ron Barker HideMute SwanWhooper SwanCanada GooseShelduckTufted DuckKingfisher and chicksOystercatcherAvocetBlack-Headed GullSwiftStonechatWheatearWhinchatMarsh HarrierKestrelKingfisher HideGreat TitBlue TitGoldfinchGreenfinchChaffinchDiscovery / Hale / Raines / Gladstone HidesCanada GooseShelduckTufted DuckTealOystercatcherAvocetCommon SandpiperCommon TernBlack-Headed GullMediterranean GullKestrelJanet Kear HideGreat TitBlue TitLong-Tailed TitGoldfinchGreenfinchChaffinchTree SparrowGreat Spotted WoodpeckerShelduckHarrier Hide / Reedbed WalkMute SwanCanada GooseShelduckTufted DuckBlack-Headed GullMarsh HarrierKestrelHareUnited Utilities / Gordon Taylor HidesCanada GooseShelduckTealOystercatcherAvocetLittle EgretBlack-Headed GullLapwingCetti's WarblerStonechatWheatearMarsh HarrierKestrelHareFeature photo of a whinchat by Gary Oldfield
This bank holiday weekend has brought us lots of lovely sightings despite the dull weather! We've had cuckoo calling in the reedbed and in the fields past Ron-Barker Hide. Also at this hide, there are a family of Kingfisher, two parents feeding their young in the small pool to the left of the hide - they can be seen on the two protruding branches in the water. Earlier today 3 female Linnet were spotted in the hedgerow leading up to the hide and a Whinchat was also seen! Hopefully later in the week we will have photos of the Kingfishers and Whinchat for you. Additionally, there have been Roe Deer running about, a Little-ringed Plover on the small island on the left marsh, and Swifts flying low on the fields with the cattle. You may notice a few extra calves roaming about the fields now! Our amazing heifer mothers have had some new babies over the past few days. On the main mere, we have two Common Terns nesting, some Greylags have hatched some goslings, Common Sandpiper have been seen feeding, and two male Garganey are swimming around. Out at Woodend Marsh, a Wood Sandpiper was spotted and on our Water rail survey this morning we heard 6 individuals calling in the reedbed. This past week we carried out 3 moth trap surveys, collecting moth species such as an Eyed Hawk Moth (our feature image this week), Swallow Prominent, and Common White Wave! In our Butterfly survey we saw more Holly Blue, our first few Red Admiral, and lots of Small White, Orange Tip, and Brimstone.
This week's sightings include:Ron Barker HideCanada GooseShelduckShovelerOystercatcherSnipeBlack-Headed GullYellow WagtailWheatearStonechatKestrelMarsh HarrierKingfisher HideGoldfinchGreenfinchBlue TitGreat TitTree SparrowDiscovery / Hale / Raines / Gladstone HidesCanada GooseShelduck3 GarganeyShovelerRuff in breeding plumageCommon SandpiperBlack-Tailed GodwitOystercatcherAvocetBlack-Headed Gull6 Mediterranean Gull2 Little GullsBlue TitGreat TitKestrelMarsh HarrierJanet Kear HideGoldfinchGreenfinchBlue TitGreat TitLong-Tailed TitTree SparrowReed BuntingShelduckHarrier Hide and ReedbedMute SwanCanada GooseGreat Crested GrebeShelduckPochardCetti's WarblerMarsh HarrierKestrelRoe DeerUnited Utilities and Gordon Taylor HidesRed-Legged PartridgeCanada GooseTealAvocetOystercatcherDunlinRuffCommon SandpiperSkylarkLapwingMarsh HarrierKestrelBuzzardWheatearStonechatHareFeature photo of a Ruff in breeding plumage by Gary Gray
It's been a busy week for the Reserve Team! Lots of surveys and early mornings, but this means an abundance of lovely species sightings! We did a Butterfly Survey last Tuesday and found a total of 21 individuals - the species found include; Green-veined White, Orange Tip, Peacock, Holly Blue, and Speckled Wood. As you walk round the reserve in the coming weeks you'll see a lot more and hopefully some more species will start to appear. We also completed a nest box survey and found that we had 38 partially completed or completed nests, much more than the last survey, so we know the birds have been busy. In addition, 16 of the completed nests have successfully laid eggs, which is a joy to see. Recently we have had the Muslin Moth and Lesser Swallow Prominent moth make their first appearance at the site, along with the return of our regulars - the Hebrew Character and Common Quaker moths.Throughout the last week, in the early morning, we have been carrying out the Breeding Bird Survey which we do monthly in Spring and Summer. We've surveyed every field and marsh, including the car park, nature trail, and public footpaths for breeding birds and managed to get some nice and informative results. In the reedbed we have Cuckoo, Grasshopper Warbler, Sedge Warbler, Bearded Tits, and Marsh Harrier - lots of beautiful species to see on this coming weekend! 7 Wheatear were seen not far from Ron-barker Hide, as well as a Cetti's warbler, snipe, and several reed bunting. We also have blackcap, dunnock and song thrush on the Gordon Taylor track.This week's feature photo is of a reed bunting.
This past weekend and glorious Monday, we've been greeted with some lovely indicators of spring time! Over the weekend we've had some new baby calves born from our amazing Long-horn Heifer mothers, all of whom seem to be doing very well. Another Osprey has been to visit us this past Saturday and one today - our photo this week is of a beautiful Osprey that visited us recently, taken by Bob Hurrell! In the reedbed, Watervole and Sedge Warbler were seen over the weekend and Avocet, Snipe, and Wheatear were seen at Ron-Barker.This morning we did another Bittern and Water rail survey - sadly we didn't hear or see any Bittern but on a positive note we heard four individual Water rail calling. During this survey we also managed to hear Sedge Warbler, Cetti's, and Grasshopper Warbler, and were lucky enough to spot a Whitethroat on the track to Gordon-Taylor. Later this week we'll be doing another Moth trap, Butterfly survey, and Nest box survey, but today we completed the monthly Wetland Bird Survey (WeBS). Across the reserve, through completing WeBS, we managed to see: Species Total Wigeon 2 Gadwall 17 Teal 73 Mallard 338 Shoveler 91 Pochard 14 Tufted Duck 20 Shelduck 164 Greylag Goose 39 Canada Goose 69 Moorhen 98 Coot 53 Lapwing 5 Black-tailed Godwit 169 Oystercatcher 15 Avocet 41 Little grebe 1 Great crested grebe 2 Cormorant 6 Grey Heron 1 Black-headed gull 1134 Lesser black-backed gull 8 Great black-backed gull 3 Mute Swan 2
So far this week we have seen some lovely birds and mammals on the public footpath including pairs of Bullfinch, lots of Cetti's Warbler, and Corn Bunting. Roe Deer and Hares have been popping in all over the reserve as well as the public footpath and Willow Warbler and Chiff Chaff are singing across the reserve and grounds. In terms of Birds of Prey, we've been revisited by the Hen Harriers, Merlin, Buzzard, Kestrel, and of course, Marsh Harriers - all can be seen flying across and circling the entire reserve. There are lots of Stonechat out in the far fields that look to be nesting and we saw a beautiful Wheatear sitting on the fence at Langleys. The Lapwings have built their nests out in Ashtons and some eggs have been seen! Speaking of eggs, we checked our Tawny Owl boxes and the one up towards Ron-Barker and Kingfisher hides has not only a nest but two eggs and a hatched chick! Our feature image today is of this box, taken by Jack Grimsditch, and in it are all the mice the mother has collected for her little family.
We have been very lucky to have had an Osprey on site this past Friday - it was seen flying over and some of our lovely visitors have taken some amazing photos of it! This hasn't been the only Bird of Prey on the reserve - we've seen a male and female Hen Harrier and a few Marsh Harriers over the week! We had an early morning today at Martin Mere out in the reedbed looking for Bittern and Water rail! Due to the clouds, it was quite a dark morning, reducing our visibility, however, there is a possibility that we managed to see a female in the reeds just before it took off - hopefully next week we will be able to confirm this! Also out this morning were Tufted Ducks and Teal swimming in the channels of the reedbed. At Discovery, we continue to have Avocet, Cormorants, and Shoveler, and the Black-headed Gulls have begun to build their nests of the islands directly in front of the hide. We've started to see little broods of ducklings following their mothers so keep an eye out for them this Easter! Last night we set up our moth trap and this morning managed to sort and identify all of the moths we caught. In total we caught an Early Thorn, 6 Hebrew Character, one Small Quaker, one Pine Beauty, one Common Quaker, one Twin-spotted Quaker, one Earl Grey, two Chestnut, one Clouded Drab, and one Ypsolopha ustella. Later in the week we'll be carrying out a butterfly survey and should be able to tell you a bit more about those species!Our photo this week is of a Hen Harrier by David Thompson
This week at Martin Mere so far, we've had the pleasure of seeing the Kingfisher in the sluice at United Utilities and a number of Avocets at Ron-Barker. There have been Redshank, Oystercatchers, and Avocets at Gordon Taylor. Harrier Hide has been blessed with a Great Crested Grebe and at the moment we have a large number of Shovelers milling about in front of Discovery and Raines Hides. Out past Gordon-Taylor, at Long-meadow Barn, there have been lots of Hares and Stonechat, and further afield we have had a pair of Red-legged Partridge and many Snipe. At Janet-Kear this morning, there was a Great Spotted Woodpecker feeding and a Brambling hopping about. Chiff Chaff and Cetti's Warbler can be heard calling throughout the reserve and grounds and many birds have begun nest building - namely the Moorhen and Coots. We carried out another Nest Box survey this week and found the same amount of nests as the previous survey, however many have been improved in the time since, and some have since been completed. There has been a lovely Little Ringed Plover on nearby fields a couple days ago and Wheatears are also in the area!Feature Image Great Crested Grebe
This weeks sightings at Martin Mere include:Ron BarkerWhooper SwanCanada GooseGreylag GooseBlack-headed GullShelduckTufted DuckSnipeOystercatcherMarsh HarrierKestrelBarn OwlKingfisher HideGreat TitBlue TitGoldfinchGreenfinchTree SparrowChaffinchHale Hide / Raines Observatory / Discovery Hide / Gladstone HideWhooper SwanCanada GooseGreylag GooseBlack-headed GullMediterranean GullCormorantLittle EgretShelduckWigeonRuffBlack tailed GodwitOystercatcherAvocetKestrelJanet KearGreat TitBlue TitLong tailed TitCoal TitGoldfinchGreenfinchChaffinchBullfinchReed BuntingTree SparrowGreat Spotted WoodpeckerJayShelduckHarrier HideCanada GooseMute SwanBlack-headed GullTufted DuckWigeonPochardShelduckLittle EgretWrenCetti's WarblerLittle GrebeGreat Crested GrebeHareUnited Utilities / Gordon TaylorCanada GooseGreylag GooseEgyptian GooseLapwingShelduckWigeonTealShovelerRuffBlack tailed GodwitAvocetOystercatcherRedshankSnipeBlack-headed GullGreat White EgretLittle EgretKingfisherMarsh HarrierBuzzardKestrelSkylarkHareRoe DeerFeature Image of Mediterranean Gulls
This sunny week we've managed to see a lovely Bullfinch at Janet Kear and the first two Sandmartins were seen passing through at United Utilities. Oystercatchers, Avocets, Godwits, Ruff, and 6 Mediterranean Gulls are frequenting the Mere and the Great White Egret and Little Egrets have been seen flying over and sitting in the ditches. Avocets have also been seen down at Ron-Barker, along with Gadwall and two Green Sandpipers. The Kingfisher has been seen in the sluice up at Long-Meadow Barn, potentially nesting with another at United Utilities Hide and two have been seen in the Sluice at Ron-Barker, flitting from bank to bank, possibly nesting too! A new male Marsh Harrier has been seen soaring over the reserve and the Buzzards have been seen hunting, and a Red Kite and Hen Harrier were kind enough to pop in for a visit. We've been doing some frog spawn surveys in the ditches in some of the outer fields and have managed to find a great deal as well as encountering some of the maternal frogs themselves. Whilst conducting these surveys we spotted Roe Deer and Water Vole tracks, Hares, Kestrel, Snipe, Red-Legged Partridge, and lots of Skylark who are soaring and singing. There's been lots of Speckled Wood, Red Admiral, Peacock, Small Tortoiseshell, as well as a few lovely Brimstone Butterfly as well as lots of bumbling bees flying about too. On Saturday, we checked the Nest Boxes we have dotted around the reserve and found that up to now we have 21 nests that are built or in the process of being completed. As we go on in the next week we hope to see some more new nests and some eggs being laid. This morning, we were also lucky enough to see two Barn Owls flying together at Ron-Barker, hunting.Feature Image Kingfisher by Charlie Lowe
Today at Martin Mere we conducted the monthly WeBS survey of all of our wetland birds and here's what we saw!15 Avocet1 Barnacle Goose670 Black-headed Gull62 Black-tailed Godwit116 Canada Goose47 Coot32 Cormorant2 Gadwall1 Garganey1 Great Black-backed Gull2 Great White Egret88 Greylag Goose55 Lapwing4 Lesser Black-backed Gull2 Little Egret290 Mallard116 Moorhen1 Mute Swan57 Oystercatcher48 Pintail5 Ruff245 Shelduck78 Shoveler166 Teal16 Tufted Duck20 Whooper Swan119 WigeonWe also had sightings of Marsh Harriers, Buzzards, Stonechats and Stock Doves as well as all the regulars at Janet Kear!Feature Image of an Avocet
This week on the reserve we've had some lovely sightings, including a Bearded Tit along the nature trail and the Siberian Chiffchaff near the public footpath again. Common Chiffchaff have been heard singing loudly throughout the day as well as in the wonderful Dawn Chorus and the Brambling are still being seen from Janet-Kear Hide. On our early morning goose and swan counts we saw a Tawny Owl sitting low in a tree on the path to Kingfisher and three Roe Deer in front of Ron-Barker Hide. We have also begun the first of our Spring/Summer surveys, starting with Bittern and a Moth Trap survey - unfortunately we haven't heard a Bittern yet but we managed to get three different Moth species which included; Orthosia gothica, CommonQuaker, and Chestnut. One Badger has been seen on our camera trap, as well as the usual suspects such as Roe Deer, Fox, and Hares. On the Mere there are around 100 Black-tailed Godwits, some with breeding colours, 4 Mediterranean Gulls, and plenty of Avocet and Oystercatcher too! Further out on the reserve, past United Utilities are Stonechat and Lapwing - both calling and the latter are beginning to nest. We have rotated the cattle on to Outer Sunley's and Doeyles so they won't be disturbing the Lapwing trying to nest. In the grounds, on the Shelduck Lawn, 3 Great White Egrets have been seen roosting and a Grey Wagtail was seen by the Chilean Flamingos. Next week we will be carrying out the Wetland Bird Survey (WeBS), in which we count every wetland bird we have on the reserve. This will feature on our sightings and precise number can be found on the sightings white board outside the visitor's centre next to the Eider enclosure.