The Lyndon Visitor Centre
The Lyndon Centre lies down a narrow track leading from the minor road between Manton and Edith Weston on the south shore of the reservoir – look for the large osprey sign. The view from the Visitor Centre is spectacular. Orchids bloom right outside and tree sparrows frequent the feeder in front of the windows.
The centre features our live osprey camera as well as fantastic new displays looking at the relationship between weather and wildlife, with specific sections on weather, climate change and phenology. There is also lots of information on the osprey project and the reserve in general and osprey staff will be on hand to give you information about the ospreys and to direct you down to the osprey viewing hides.
Opening Hours & Entry Fees
The Lyndon Visitor Centre is open daily from 9am – 5pm from mid-March to early September. The reserve remains open until 8pm, when the car park will be locked. Please be aware that if your car is still in the car park at this time, you may get locked in.
Day Permits: A charge is made for access to the Lyndon and Egleton reserves, with a total of 27 birdwatching hides (7 at Lyndon, 20 at Egleton). Parking is included in the price of a permit – a parking ticket will be issued for you to display. Permits are issued daily and can be obtained from both visitor centres. Concessions are available for senior citizens (over 60), students, disabled visitors and their carers. Family tickets for 2 adults and up to 4 children can be purchased.
- Adults £6
- Concession £5
- Junior £3.50
- Family tickets £16
- 4 Day Permit (to be used within 10 days of issue) £16.00
NB: Members of the Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust receive a 10% discount on permits.
Group Visits: We welcome group visits and offer a discount on permits for a party of 10 or more, booked in advance £4. These visits can begin with an introductory talk about the reserve by appointment.
We an also offer guided walks when booked well in advance, please click here for more information on how to book.
Annual Permit: For regular visitors this is a very good buy for a family of up to 5 (2 adults and up to 3 children) £68 per family for the year entitles you to as many visits as you like during the year, as well a membership of the Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust . This pass is only £40.00 per family if you are already a member of the Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust. (NB This pass does not give access to the Egleton reserve during the Birdfair weekend).
Lyndon is well worth a visit at any time of year, but as the video below filmed by Dave Cole shows, spring is a particularly special time.
Additional Information about the Lyndon Reserve
Disabled access: There is access for the disabled at the Lyndon centre – access is possible to Waderscrape Hide, Shallow Water Hide, Teal Hide and Swan Hide and the visitor centre itself.
Buggy: An electric buggy is available for hire (advanced booking is essential, please ring to check availability – 01572 737378).
Toilets: There are toilets with disabled facilities within the visitor centre
Dogs: To safeguard wildlife, grazing sheep and cattle, dogs must be kept on a lead at all times, and all waste picked up please.
The Breeding Ospreys!
The nest in Manton Bay is occupied by an unringed female osprey, called Maya, who has been breeding there since 2010. Her partner is a Rutland male, 33(11), who fledged in 2011 from another nest in the area. This pair have been breeding together since 2015. Prior to partnering with 33, Maya’s mate was another Rutland male, 5R(04). They bred for four years, raising 11 chicks, but 5R failed to return in 2014 which brought about the change in partner. Maya and 33 have raised eight chicks together up to 2017.
The Osprey Viewing Hides
Waderscrape hide is a fifteen minute walk from the Lyndon Centre and has great views of the osprey nest. It also looks out over a small reedbed where a pair of breeding water rail will bring their chicks almost within touching distance of the hide. In addition, it has superb views of smaller reedbed birds such as reed buntings and reed and sedge warblers. From March to September the hide is manned by our team of osprey volunteers. They will make sure you get the best possible views of the ospreys through our project telescopes, and will answer any questions you may have.
Shallow Water Hide
Shallow Water hide, a little further west, looks out across the shallowest part of Manton Bay to the osprey nest. It is a twenty minute walk from the centre along the nature trail. In spring, great crested grebes can be seen doing their elegant synchronised mating dance while buzzard and red kite fly over the woods beyond the nest. Wildfowl swim in the bay in spring, and when the water levels fall in late summer, the area is taken over by wading birds feeding on the exposed mud. Both hides have full disabled access and a motorised buggy is available for hire.
The Walk to the Hides
The nature trail runs between the shore of the reservoir and the reserve’s traditionally managed hay meadows. There are three other hides accessible from the nature trail giving views of the reservoir and the chance to see a range of other birds such as kingfisher, water rail and a wide variety of wildfowl and waders. The hay meadows are full of wild flowers and in the summer they are teeming with butterflies, damselflies and day-flying moths.