Spoonbills breed at Cley for the first time


Norfolk's breeding population of Eurasian Spoonbills continues to expand, with the announcement that the species has bred on private land in the vicinity of Cley and Salthouse Marshes NWT for the first time.

A quote on the trust's Twitter page noted that they "hope to see the youngsters feeding from their parents on the reserve in the coming weeks". Spoonbills are already a regular fixture at the site, with both Cley and Salthouse proving popular feeding spots for birds commuting to and from the extensive colony at nearby Holkham NNR.

Eurasian Spoonbill has established a stronghold along the North Norfolk coast (Nick Appleton).

Eurasian Spoonbills first bred at Holkham NNR in 2010, where they have now established a stronghold in Britain. Previously, the species hadn't nested regularly in Britain since the 1700s. By 2020, numbers had increased to a record 28 pairs, with a total of 345 young successfully fledging from the site between 2010 and 2020.

The species has continued to expand its breeding range throughout Britain in recent years, breeding in Yorkshire for the first time at Fairburn Ings RSPB in 2017, Suffolk for the first time in 300 years at Havergate Island in 2020, and Essex for the first time at Abberton Reservoir in 2021.