Lower Farm Hide
Lower Farm is situated behind Newbury Racecourse between Thatcham Reedbeds nature reserve and BBOWT's Bowdown Woods, and north of Greenham Common, part of the area forming the basis of the local Living Landscape. The hide is open at all times and overlooks one of the many restored gravel workings in the area.
The best times for using the hide are any early mornings from late August/early September and October for passage waders and migrants. Species could include Common, Sandwich and Black Tern, Little Ringed Plover, Snipe, Redshank, Greenshank, Oystercatcher, Osprey, Marsh Harrier, Common and Green Sandpipers, Peregrine and Golden Plover (to name just a few!). During the winter the pit becomes the major roost for Lesser Black-backed Gull and Black-headed Gull, but also found in the flocks are Common Gull, frequent Yellow-legged Gull and rarely Caspian Gull. Over 150 species have been recorded here. Rarities have included Great White Egret and Spoonbill.
The water level in the pit rises dramatically during the winter months when the area is taken over by many varieties of duck. Work parties organised by NDOC have been clearing the banks and some islands to encourage waders to nest. The work parties are usually in attendance on Wednesday mornings in the winter.
Vehicle access is only via Hambridge Lane, follow the signs to 'Bird Hide Car Park'.
Grid Reference: SU498662