One of the Society’s less well known and little-used assets is the bird hide at Fisherman’s Channel, near Channel Farm on Sunk Island.  It has views overlooking reed bed, marsh and open water of Fisherman’s Channel.

Where?

From the road linking Patrington Haven and Sunk Island, take Channel Road southwards as far as the left turn to Newlands (about half a mile).  At this T junction there is a small brick wall to the right, over which the hide can be seen.  The road verge is wide but please do not park close to any junctions as heavy farm machinery may want to pass. Opposite the Channel Farm entrance is a farm track and immediately to the right, a straight path leads to the hide.

What it is?

This hide is more than 25 years old and is starting to look its age, but is still functional.  It was designed to facilitate people with mobility impairment, providing easy having access via a long slope with gentle gradient and a handrail.  Internally it has a viewing window designed to accommodate a wheelchair.

What can be seen there?

While taking a break from clearing the access path in June I saw from the hide a Little Egret, a Reed Bunting, Sedge Warblers, several House Martins, a Wood Pigeon and a small flock of Stock Doves, and heard a Dunnock, all over a period of just five minutes.

The future

The Society has recently sought quotes to renovate the hide but no-one seems to want to do the work.  We will keep it safe to use until such time that major work is needed.  It is visited twice yearly to stop brambles and the hedge encroaching over the path and some users also do bits of work there.  Ideally, we would like users to adopt the hide on a ‘use it or lose it’ principle.  The more it is used, the greater the justification will be for replacing it.

Please contact us if you use this hide and would like to comment and/or submit records and photographs by clicking here.