Following recent excitement over the arrival of rare herons to the site, RSPB Burton Mere Wetlands is now celebrating further, with confirmed breeding of Bearded Tits for the first time ever at the nature reserve near Neston.
Bearded Tits rely on reedbeds to make their home. Once much more common throughout the UK, reedbeds are sadly now one of country’s rarest habitats as many have been drained for development or agriculture. In the North West, the only place where they have traditionally bred is at the RSPB’s Leighton Moss reserve in North Lancashire, but following the arrival of six birds to Burton Mere Wetlands last autumn, at least two pairs are now known to have bred for the first time on the Dee Estuary.
Graham Jones, Site Manager at Burton Mere Wetlands said: ‘In 2007 we were able to purchase land adjacent to our reserve from the Welsh Assembly. A three-year work programme began almost immediately to create a reedbed, into which volunteers’ hand-planted over 10,000 reed seedlings. To have Bearded Tits now breeding in the very same reedbed this summer has been a wonderfully fitting culmination of all that hard work, and a fantastic way celebrate our 40th anniversary”