Flight of fancy

Some of East Anglia s popular winter visitors will soon have a new home in the Fens thanks to a joint conservation project. A 38-hectare habitat will be created next to Welney Wetland Centre to accommodate migrating flocks of wigeon which arrive in the UK

Some of East Anglia's popular winter visitors will soon have a new home in the Fens thanks to a joint conservation project. A 38-hectare habitat will be created next to Welney Wetland Centre to accommodate migrating flocks of wigeon which arrive in the UK every year to escape the cold of their native Iceland, Scandinavia and Russia. Managers at the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust hoped the new area of shallow water ditches and short sward grassland would help the wigeon to thrive, as well as supporting other breeding birds and invertebrates.

The project was funded by the Environment Agency, which bought the former agricultural land in 2006 to compensate for flood defence work carried out on the Middle Level Barrier Bank of the Ouse Washes.

Planners at West Norfolk Council have given the project the green light and work is expected to start on the land in mid-February for completion later in the summer.


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