02/06/2013
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Breeding success for Welney Avocets

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The proud Avocet parents tending to their three chicks. Photo courtesy of the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust (www.wwt.org.uk).
The proud Avocet parents tending to their three chicks. Photo courtesy of the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust (www.wwt.org.uk).

This year’s first brood of Avocet chicks has hatched at Welney WWT, the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust (WWT) has announced. The proud parents are the first of 33 pairs to successfully hatch their eggs, and they now have three fluffy young to show off.

This welcome good news follows a host of weather-related disasters. Last year the reserve’s entire Avocet colony lost their eggs due to severe flooding. Earlier this year hundreds of auks were washed up dead along the north-east coast of Britain, believed to be a result of the continuing cold weather, and Stone-curlews were found starved to death in Norfolk.

Leigh Marshall, centre manager for Welney WWT, said: “It is wonderful to see these fantastic birds breeding successfully on the reserve again.

Avocets nest on bare ground very close to water, which means that they prefer to use the lagoons right in front of the hides. The Lyle hide is the best one for Avocet chick viewing as we have our very own ‘Avocet island’, where the majority of the pairs are nesting.

“Visitors will be able to watch the chicks being shown how to feed by their parents. The up-turned bill is swept back and forth through the water as they feed on the tiny insects that make up their diet.”

If you want to see the chicks, see the website for information on visiting Welney WWT.


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Written by: Birdwatch news team