Highlights: Good at all times but best in spring and autumn
Access: Park by the slipway opposite and walk to the hides
Perrys Guide: 12 C4
Aquatic Warbler Acrocephalus paludicola - recorded annually in the reedbeds (Photo: Jamie Hooper)
Nature Reserves

La Claire Mare

La Claire Mare is a low-lying saline wetland on the west coast of Guernsey. Itis one of the island's premier reserves for birds and is comprised of wet grassland,reedbeds & open water. In winter it regularly supports wildfowl such as Teal,Wigeon & Shoveler & a roost of up to 50 Little Egrets at high tide. Duringmigration periods a great variety of species have been recorded including mostof the common migrant waders, ducks & warblers. Aquatic Warblers, the onlyglobally-threatened bird species to regularly visit the Bailiwick, are recordedannually in autumn. A book kept in the hide is available for observers to logtheir recent sightings.

Located next to the shingle bank at L'Eree, salt water is forced into the pondon spring high tides, leading to a brackish envirionment. This is a rare habitatin Guernsey and the reserves has a few specialist plant species, such as SeaAster, that are remnants from saltmarshes that were formerly more widespread.

To the SE, approached from Rue des Mares is a large area of wet meadows. Thesehave many species of orchid and other wetland plants in May and June and areextremely rich in insects. A path is cut round the edge so that the flowers andother wildlife can be enjoyed in spring and summer. In winter this area is usuallyflooded.

View from the main hide overlooking the scrape, open water and reedbeds
Wet meadows at the rear of the reserve
Loose-flowered Orchid Orchis laxiflora and other flowers in the wet meadows.
Yellow Flag Iris
Garganey - a scare spring migrant
Fan-tailed Warbler Cisticola junducis - a species that was first recorded in 2000, totalling 3 records to 2004 and none in 2005 or 2006. Is this that start of a colonisation or a failed attempt?
A flea-beetle common on Yellow Flag Iris
Immature Long-winged Conehead, Conocephalus discolor, a bush cricket or long-horned grasshopper

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Candie Gardens, St Peter Port, Guernsey GY1 1UG, Channel Islands.