Saving Holkham's Farmland Birds

Posted: May 16th 2019

by Andy Bloomfield, NNR Warden

In recent weeks we have been mapping the territories of Yellowhammers, Whitethroats, Linnets and Skylarks on the Estate’s farmland and also finding the nests of vulnerable ground nesting birds too. These have included Lapwings and Oystercatchers, two species that also nest on the coast (grazing marshes for the former and beaches and marshes for the latter) and are in steep decline.

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The Big Farmland Bird Count

Posted: April 21st 2019

by Andrew Bloomfield

This February the estate became involved with the National Farmer’s Union’s Big Farmland Bird Count, a nationwide initiative (open to all farmers and landowners) to assess the number of farmland birds using given areas in any one week during the month. The bird count proved not only fun for those undertaking the counts but also helped us to work out how good some areas were for attracting large numbers of birds and how other areas were very impoverished.

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Managing reedbed at Holkham National Nature Reserve

Posted: April 09th 2019

by Paul Eele

Find out about the importance of managing the reedbeds on the National Nature Reserve.

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Twerk

Posted: March 07th 2019

by Jonathan Holt

Seals are a common sight on the coast of Norfolk but what happens when they get into difficulty on Holkham Beach? Find out what happened to a young seal called Twerk that washed ashore last year.

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Cries of the Laughing Goose

Posted: January 27th 2019

by Andrew Bloomfield

Of all our winter wildfowl that descend here every year it is the White-fronted Goose that traditionally attracts most attention from visiting birdwatchers. This smaller relative of the common feral Greylag Goose appears annually in Norfolk at only a handful of regular sites and the marshes of Holkham have long been famed for attracting a flock.

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Travellers from the North

Posted: January 11th 2019

by Andrew Bloomfield

The late autumn and early part of the winter has been mild and dry at Holkham which has consequently meant that numbers of wintering ducks on the marshes have been quite low. There has however been much interest from visiting birdwatchers due to three special species of songbird which have arrived on the reserve in recent weeks. They all have one thing very much in common; they all come from extremely cold breeding grounds in the northern extremities of the World. The most popular attraction for visitors and locals alike has been the appearance of a group of Shore Larks on the beach and developing saltmarsh between Holkham and Wells.

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Looking Back at a Successful Year in the Walled Garden

Posted: January 09th 2019

by Dene Wood, Head Gardener

2018 was another great year in the Gardens Department, a somewhat snowy spring followed by very challenging summer meant that hosepipes and sprinklers were very much the tool of choice, whilst mowers sat idle more than usual! Head Gardener, Dene Wood looks back at a successful 2018 and talks about big plans for 2019.

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Far Eastern Travellers

Posted: November 07th 2018

by Andy Bloomfield

One species we truly associate with late autumn at Holkham is the Yellow-browed Warbler. It is a tiny species, barely 10cm long and weighing anything up to nine grams, slightly larger than our Goldcrest; Europe’s smallest bird. Miraculously for a bird so small it migrates here over a distance of over 3000 miles from nesting grounds in the Siberian taiga forests.

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