Minsmere has a special place in my heart, having spent nine years there in the late ’80’s/ ’90s and witnessed, as well as participated in the wonderful work for wildlife the staff all do. I’m so pleased to see they’ve been nominated! Read on and please do add your vote!
Minsmere in running for Nature Reserve of the Year
RSPB Minsmere nature reserve, near Westleton on the Suffolk Coast, has been nominated in the 2014/15 BBC Countryfile Magazine Awards “Nature Reserve of the Year” category by none other than BBC Springwatch presenter, Chris Packham.
Mr Packham and the BBC Springwatch team spent three weeks at Minsmere filming the intimate lives of tawny owls, bitterns and reed warblers protecting, feeding and raising their young in the nature reserve this spring.
Five nature reserves were nominated, including the Wildfowl and Wetland Trust’s London Wetland Centre, and Martin Down National Nature Reserve in Wiltshire. In the article, which appears in January’s issue of BBC Countryfile Magazine, Chris Packham describes Minsmere’s nomination: “It has so much in terms of habitats, species and facilities including many rarities and ‘super birds’! A family-friendly must.”
Adam Rowlands, the RSPB’s Senior Site Manager at Minsmere, said: “It’s great to be nominated as one of the country’s top and best-loved nature reserves. I know Chris Packham and the rest of the Springwatch team really fell in love with the wildlife here this summer. It’s brilliant that our work to make Minsmere somewhere that families can come and have an amazing wildlife experience has been successful, thanks to the support of the Heritage Lottery Fund and other supporters.”
In other Award categories, The Broads appeared on the list of nominees for the country’s “Greatest National Park”, and BBC Wildlife Magazine chose the year’s top wildlife success stories, which included the continuing recovery of the otter, one of Minsmere’s most charismatic species.
Adam Rowlands said: “Otters are always one of the most popular animals with visitors and staff alike. They are also a good indicator of healthy wetlands and the fact that they are doing well elsewhere too is a sign that wildlife conservation is working.”
BBC Countryfile Magazine is inviting readers to vote for their countryside favourites in 12 Award categories via post, email or online.
To vote for Minsmere as “Nature Reserve of the Year”, visit www.countryfile.com/awards2014-15 , email firstname.lastname@example.org, or pick up a copy of January’s BBC Countryfile Magazine, on sale 24th December, Christmas Eve. Entries close on 31 January.
Not just one nomination
Minsmere’s growing popularity has been recognized with nominations for two other national competitions too. In the Birdwatch magazine Birders Choice awards, Minsmere was nominated as best site.
Landlove magazine’s awards list Minsmere as one of Britain’s favourite nature reserves Entries close on 4 January.
Winter wildlife walks
Minsmere nature reserve is open throughout the Christmas and New Year period, except Christmas Day and Boxing Day.
Join our “Magic of Minsmere” winter wildlife walk on Saturday 3 January for a tour around this amazing wildlife haven, where more the 5,000 species have been recorded! Places are limited, so booking is advisable by calling 01728 648281. Alternatively, simply turn up and explore the different habitats and use our many wildlife watching hides for a special winter nature experience.
Visit www.rspb.org.uk/minsmere for more details about winter visiting and the wildlife you can see at Minsmere at this time of year.