GET your wellies and woolly hat on and spend the day splashing around with the ducks at Pulborough Brooks.
Celebrate World Wetlands Day in February with the RSPB at Pulborough Brooks where thousands of ducks, geese and wading birds make their home over the winter .
The cold winters of northern Europe drive many of the ducks that breed in Iceland, Scandinavia and north eastern Europe further south to places like the brooks.
Anna Allum, RSPB visitor officer, said: “The winter floods this year have been very dramatic, with two of our hides becoming inaccessible, and inevitably a significant clean-up operation will be necessary once the floods recede.
“The ducks don’t seem to mind though – it gives them plenty of water to choose from!”
The nature reserve is managed so the flooded meadows provide the right conditions for waterbirds, and offers visitors a wonderful spectacle.
Dabbling ducks like the familiar mallard and the small zippy teal can be found inhabiting the shallower pools, and diving ducks such as the tufted duck arrive if the floods are deep.
World Wetlands Day, held on February 2 each year, is an international celebration of this important habitat and to coincide with the event, Pulborough Brooks is inviting everyone to a Winter wildlife watch being held over the weekend of February 1-2, with friendly guides to take visitors around the nature trails to special wildlife watchpoints.
Anna added: “I love this time of year, the wetlands are teeming with colourful teal, elegant pintail and minesweeping shoveler ducks.
“There are some great noises too – whistling wigeon, quacking mallards and honking geese. There’s even a chance that a peregrine falcon – the fastest creature in the world – may pay us a visit, causing chaos amongst the ducks and lapwings and creating quite a spectacle!”
Further details can be found at rspb.org.uk/pulboroughbrooks or from the visitor centre by calling 01798 875851 or email email@example.com.
Walks start at 11am and 2pm on February, Saturday 1, and Sunday 2. There is a charge of £5 per person or £2 for RSPB members and children’s entry is free.