Friday 20th December
Friday morning and my plans to visit Mouldon Hill has been side by our lovely weather . Definitely a day to be in a hide so it’s off to Lower Moor Farm nature reserve, and a very waterlogged and even muddier reserve , something I thought was impossible after Sunday’s visit. Once again the rain gods shined on me so to speak , and once again the rain held off just long enough for me to get into a hide and thankfully back to the car park. Another outing for the new winter jacket from a company called Country Innovations, again all nice and cosy and for once due mainly to the weather I had the hide to myself. Not a great day for photography, but still a better view from my office window !
Wildlife sightings today , Robin , Blue tits , Great tits , Blackbird , The now usual fly past from the Kingfisher . New for me a Water Railand Bull Finch who was definitely camera shy and for the first time at Lower Mill , a Jay.
Shot of the day , not a great one by any means but my first camera shy Bull Finch
Here’s the full details of Lower Moor Farm……
Lower Moor Farm is one of my favourite reserves to visit. Owned and managed by the Wiltshire Wildlife Trust the site includes Lower Moor Farm , Sandpool and Oaksey Moor Farm Meadow and Clattinger Farm and covers 126 hectares of land , including three Lakes.
The reserve is at the western edge of the Cotswold Water Park , easy to find and with good level parking and toilets. Most of the paths are easy to navigate but do become a little bit more difficult in periods of wet weather.
Lower Moor Farm opened in 2007 and is the gateway to Clattinger Farm, Oaksey Moor Farm Meadow and Sandpool nature reserves. From LM you can walk into the other reserves and explore a landscape of fascinating contrasts. The reserve comprises three lakes, two brooks, ponds and wetland scrapes linked together by boardwalks, ancient hedges, woodland and meadows. The lakes were created by gravel extraction in the 1970s. Mallard Lake is a Site of Special Scientific Interest due to its distinctive aquatic plants, which include rare stoneworts. The visitor centre is a resource for education groups and volunteers and a replica Iron Age hut is a focus for our educational activities. Large populations of wildfowl swim in the lakes – great crested grebe, teal, shoveler duck and goosander to name a few. You can enjoy the birdlife from hides at Swallow Pool and Cottage Lake – the latter is accessible for wheelchairs and pushchairs. Water voles and otters use Flagham Brook. On sunny days see if you can spot the emperor, southern hawker and downy emerald dragonflies.
The reserve supports a wide range of birds and mammals, with Kingfisher , Otters and the Heron among the highlights .
Cricklade SN16 9TW OS map 169 grid ref: SU007939
Wheelchair access to one bird hide and across the boardwalk to Mallard Lake. From this point, footpath can be muddy.
Dogs on leads welcome
Total complex 126.18 hectares
Toilets, including disabled, available for events
From Oaksey go in direction of Somerford Keynes for about one mile, crossing the railway line and round an S-bend. About 75 metres after S-bend the entrance is on right. From Cricklade drive northwards on A419, then turn left onto B4696 towards Somerford Keynes. Continue straight over crossroads and then for a further 2.5 miles until you see the entrance on left. There is parking at the visitor centre.
Wildlife sightings at Lower Mill Farm….
Otter, Fox , Brown Rat, Water vole, Pheasant, Magpie, Wood Pigeon, Robin , Blue Tit, Great Tit, Kingfisher, Marsh Tit, Wren, Galwall, Gideon, Mallard, Swan, Cormorant, Heron , Jay , Bull Finch
All images on this page taken at Lower Moor Farm. Last update 20/12/2019
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