In winter listen out for a water rail squealing or the strident song of the Cetti’s warbler. You may even spot an overwintering bittern or marsh harrier gliding over the reeds.
As spring arrives listen out for the returning reed and sedge warblers, or a cuckoo. Dragonflies such as the hairy or emperor can be seen patrolling the ponds and ditches. Also in the ditches, look out for the insectivorous plant, bladderwort. It particularly likes ditches that have recently been cleared of encroaching reed. The boardwalk provides a warm sheltered area for insects to bask and butterflies such as the small tortoiseshell or the caterpillar of the drinker moth are often seen along here.
There is also plenty of yellow loosestrife, so look out for the distinctive yellow faced bee here. The distinctive call of the marsh frog can be heard all around the reserve in the summer and you may spot one in the pond at the end of the boardwalk.
bearded tit / Derek Middleton