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Leicestershire & Rutland Ornithological Society

On this page we post any birding or other wildlife-related news we think you might be interested in. If you hear of a piece of news which others might like to know about, send it to for inclusion on this page.

7th March 2018

Hicks Lodge Conservation Work Party

Before: too many trees that provide perches and cover for corvids that will predate nests and fledglings.

The new Sand Martin wall awaiting some visitors.

The more open habitat, ideal for ground nesting birds such as Redshank, Lapwing, Oystercatcher, Common Tern and Skylark.

Thanks to everyone involved. We could not have achieved so much without this fantastic support.

We also created some brash piles ideal as cover for young birds. Some overhanging bushes were left for Kingfishers. The end of the gorse was cut back so that the Sand Martin wall is visible from the hide. Most of the gorse was left to provide nesting opportunities and a refuge from the cold.

14th February 2018

February Conservation Work Party

Four hardy souls helped to clear the pond at Wistow. Chris, Carol, Russell and Andy braved sub-Arctic conditions, breaking through the ice to clear the pond. Thanks to their efforts the pond now has some clear water and two Kingfisher perches. The use of two cromes helped in the task. The image of the volunteers demonstrates the calibre of our loyal helpers. But seriously, would you in your right mind approach them?!

Before clearing the reeds

After clearing

10th January 2018

January Conservation Work Party

As if to thank these stalwart LROS Conservation volunteers, the grim and grey weather was replaced by an almost spring-like day. This encouraged everyone to complete a great job coppicing an area of Hazel at Brown's Wood. A total of 18 trees were coppiced. Two brash piles and a log pile were created. We also put in two stumps to hopefully encourage Willow Tit to nest.

Thanks to Carol, Chris, Pete and Christine for their commitment to conservation.

6th December 2017

December Conservation Work Party

Five enthusiastic conservation volunteers completed a morning in the Green Gym at Church Farm. Tasks carried out included bringing in the tern raft, removing the weeds and cleaning the perspex sides. Paths were made to the two Sand Martin walls and the areas in front of the walls were cleared. Vegetation was cut back from in front of the hide to improve the view and a stick was put into the bank to attract the local Kingfisher. A massive thank you goes to Chris, Carol, Mick and Russell.

15th November 2017

November Conservation Work Party

LROS Conservation volunteers helped to clear an area around the scrapes near Tower hide at Watermead Country Park. Nine enthusiastic souls spent the morning in the 'Green Gym'! As well as the obvious health and fitness benefits wildlife was also the winner. Last year we cleared the same area and flushed a Jack Snipe. This year we flushed two Snipe and two Jack Snipe. Without management this area would rapidly become overgrown, the shallow scrape would disappear and the reeds would be replaced by trees, not good Snipe habitat. I have no doubt that the snipe are already back enjoying this area and I look forward to seeing them again next year. A massive thank you to all super stars from the Snipe!

4th September 2017

September Conservation Work Party

The first task of the autumn was to clear the gravel island at Hicks Lodge. This had two aims. One is to maintain it as an open area for breeding terns, gulls and waders and secondly to improve the viewing of the island for birdwatchers.

With the help of Alan Dowell and his Forestry Commission rangers, plus Chris Flint and myself, we were able to complete this task. We were also able to clear vegetation from the two tern rafts.

The gravel island has been very successful this summer. It has been rapidly adopted by a colony of Black-headed Gulls, and approximately 25 pairs have nested this summer. There have also been four pairs of Common Tern and one pair of Oystercatchers. I believe that the management of this island has helped to attract these species to breed.

Andy Smith

2nd July 2017

Colour-ringed Common Terns

Andy Smith has recently ringed 29 juvenile Common Terns at Watermead CP, and asks birders to look out for and report them. This year's birds have yellow rings with a code in black: U00 - U28. These should return as adults in two year's time. Previous year's birds (starting in 2014) have lime green rings with the same code sequence. Please report any sightings to Andy: - the railings at Cropston Res dam is apparently a favourite spot for Watermead terns!


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