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Rare bird seen at Gloucester's Horsbere Reserve

Published
14.01.2016

Sightings of a very rare bird has bird watchers excited after being spotted at a new city council reserve.

The bird, known as a penduline tit has only been recorded once in the Gloucestershire area since records began. 

Horsbere Reserve was developed by the Environment Agency as part of the flood management scheme. It is now owned and managed by Gloucester City Council.  The reserve is made up of a large wetland that diverts flood water away from properties and into the storage area at times of a flood, as well as being an important wildlife habitat.  

Cllr Jim Porter, cabinet member for environment at Gloucester City Council said, "It is very exciting to have such a rare bird visit the reserve.

"Horsbere Reserve was only built a few years ago and already we have had visits from various wetland birds such as herons, kingfishers and egrets.

"It is good to see that an area designed for flood protection is also benefitting nature conservation."

Over the past few days bird watchers have been excited to watch a pair of penduline tits feed on bulrush in the wetland area. 

Mike Smart Honorary Chairman of the Gloucestershire Naturalists' Society, Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust trustee and local resident added: "This is an exceedingly rare bird only once ever before being recorded in Gloucestershire.

"The species has spectacular plumage and originates in central europe; it gets its name from its habit of hanging upside down on bulrushes on which it feeds."

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