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Photographs shown above:  © Nigel Sprowell

Breaking News!

Deja-vu – where has she been? A question we have been asking ourselves for the past few weeks.

Last year “our“ swan gave pleasure to many whilst nesting on the Island, on The Waits side, producing a family of 8 cygnets, all of which eventually reached adulthood being a remarkable achievement. Well, she was clearly hiding nearby – maybe in isolation -- and in the last few days (article written May 10th) she proudly presented another batch of 8 cygnets to her admirers at The Waits.

We wish them all well and let us hope they are as successful as last year, and learn to practice social distancing!!

Nigel Sprowell - Friend

swan and sygnets 2020

 sygnets 2020

Photographs © Nigel Sprowell


HOLT ISLAND ON ITV NEWS - MAY 2011

Children and staff from Westfield Junior School in St. Ives just happened to be visiting the Island at the same time as when ITV local news were visiting the Island to film and interview Paul Claydon our Countryside Ranger about the construction of our new boardwalk by our volunteers (watch the VIDEO here).

 

DELAY TO THE OPENING OF HOLT ISLAND NATURE RESERVE

This year’s floods have caused considerable damage to the older boardwalk non-slip strips, and as a result they will need to be replaced before the Island can be safely opened to the public.

This work would normally be done by our Practical Volunteers under the direction of our Huntingdon District Council Ranger, but given the Government’s recent announcements HDC will not be using volunteer parties at this time. Our Ranger will carry on the work on his own when he can, but we do not know how long the repairs will take. Be assured, we will open as soon as it is safe to do so.

However, in the interests of our visitors’ and volunteers’ safety in the current crisis, when we do open we will not be opening our interpretive centre, the Holt. This is necessary to protect everyone as it is an enclosed space and very difficult to clean thoroughly.

SCHOOLS AND YOUTH GROUPS

Once the Island is safely opened again you are very welcome to book visits, and we will continue to open and close the Island for you. However, we will not be opening the Holt (for the reasons explained above) and will not be able to offer you volunteers to help. There are a lot of activity worksheets and our Education Pack available on the website to download, for use on the Island.

FAMILY FUN DAY WITH THE NORRIS – 28TH MAY 2020

Due to the continuing COVID-19 pandemic the Family Fun Day 2020 has been cancelled until 2021.

 



You may have noticed clusters of these black, bristly caterpillars on Holt Island recently. These are the caterpillars of the Peacock butterfly – you may also see these beautiful butterflies in your garden. The females lays around 500 eggs, usually on nettles (which are plentiful on Holt Island), which the caterpillars also eat. When the caterpillars hatch – after about two weeks – they spin a web in which they live and feed as a community. As they grow they live more in the open. The adult butterflies emerge in July.

Did you know? The “eye spots” on the Peacock butterfly are used to scare off predators.

Peacock butterfly caterpillars

Peacock butterfly