Havergate Island is famous for its breeding avocets and terns, which can be seen throughout the spring and summer. In autumn and winter, the island provides a haven for large numbers of ducks and wading birds. Boasting five hides and a viewing screen, there’s great scope for birdwatching on Havergate Island. A trail cuts through the island, allowing walkers to enjoy a gentle mile and a quarter long stroll across it. The boat trip to the island adds to the interest of your day out, and helps you really feel you’re getting away from it all rhubarb candle.
Havergate Island offers a variety of experiences depending on the season. In spring, the air is filled with birdsong as competition to establish territories and attract a mate is the order of the day. In summer, look out for young birds making their first venture into the outside world. Autumn brings large movements of migrating birds – some heading south to a warmer climate, others seeking refuge in the UK from the cold Arctic winter. In winter, look out for large flocks of birds gathering to feed, or flying at dusk to form large roosts to keep warm.
The hares on the island are most active in early spring. Wading birds and ducks display and nest on the islands in the lagoons. Flowering thrift turns the saltmarshes pink. Common terns, with a few sandwich terns, return to breed.
Grassland butterflies, such as skippers, small coppers, wall and meadow browns and gatekeepers, are common. Migrating wading birds stop off on the lagoons to feed and roost. Wheatears can be seen on the paths and shingle in late summer.