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A visit to WWT Slimbridge is a completely unique experience from one month to the next. In the summer months breeding birds are in full swing and the first waders are returning from the Arctic. In the cold winter months the reserve is a hive of activity for migrants such as Bewick's swans and you stand a good chance of catching a glimpse of a short-eared or barn owl.

Here's what you can expect to see and when to help with planning your visit...


  • Sand martins and swallow arrive in March time
  • Mediterranean gulls have become regular spring migrants and may breed in the future
  • In March the common cranes display and begin nesting
  • White-fronted geese leave the site
  • From April cuckoos arrive
  • Kingfishers begin prospecting nest sites and start laying around April time visible from the Kingfisher Hide
  • Warblers begin to breed during this season
  • During May migrating birds pass through including grey plover and whimbrel
  • Expect to see lapwing and redshank chicks
  • Towards the end of May kingfishers may hatch depending on when they started incubating, visible from the Kingfisher Hide