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Hickling Broad, Hickling

4.7
#20 of 55 in Historic Sites in Norfolk
Wildlife Area Historic Site
Hickling Broad lies within Norfolk, England, 4 km south-east of Stalham.It is a national nature reserve established by English Nature and in the care of the Norfolk Wildlife Trust, who run boat trips around the reserve for visitors. It is also part of the Upper Thurne Broads and Marshes Site of Special Scientific Interest. In the 1990s, over £650,000 was spent on restoring the reserve, and invasive plants are kept under control by grazing hardy breeds of cattle, sheep and ponies from Eastern Europe. Water levels are managed, and the reed and sedge beds are regularly mown to encourage wildlife.It is the broad with the largest surface area, and the water is slightly brackish, due to its proximity to the sea. The navigation channel is only 1.5 m deep, with much of the broad being shallower; it is 1.4 km², making it one of the largest expanses of open water in East Anglia.It has the largest reed-bed in England and supports rare waterweeds such as the holly-leaved naiad and three rare species of stonewort. Amongst the rare insects is the swallowtail butterfly which feeds on milk-parsley, the Norfolk hawker Aeshna isosceles and Emperor dragonfly. Birds that visit the reserve during the winter include cranes, goldeneyes, shovelers and teals, while bitterns, marsh harriers, pochards, water rails and Cetti's warblers stay for most of the year. There is a waymarked walk around the broad.
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103 reviews
TripAdvisor
  • Well marked paths around the Nature Reserve run very well by Norfolk Wildlife Trust. Saw Swallowtails, Marsh Harriers, Cuckoo and heard the Bittern as well as seeing a good variety of dragonflies. Unf...  more »
  • What a stunning place to go for a work and enjoy the Norfolk broads. We found this very accessible and lots of paths to explore in and amongst the reed beds. It seemed quite busy on the day we went bu...  more »
  • We have been coming to Hickling broad for over thirty years .we love it ! It is a vaste area of water full of wildlife .bitterns (seen three times) marsh harriers terns geese bearded tits and reed war...  more »

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