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Birdwatching will be a right lark!

PUBLISHED: 11:01 23 May 2008 | UPDATED: 10:52 08 July 2010

Visitors are being urged to go larking about in Thetford Forest over the bank holiday weekend to get a sight of one of Britain's rarest and most tuneful birds.

Visitors are being urged to go larking about in Thetford Forest over the bank holiday weekend to get a sight of one of Britain's rarest and most tuneful birds.

The globally threatened woodlark is experiencing a rival in Breckland following decades of erosion of its lowland habitat.

Officials from the RSBP will be on hand at Brandon Country Park from Saturday to show off the red listed bird, which has made its home on a new area of heath.

Visitors will be shown how to use telescopes and binoculars to get up close and personal with the woodlark as part of the wildlife organisation's 'Aren't Birds Brilliant' event.

The species, which has a flute-like song, is one of the top conservation priorities in the UK after its population declined over the last century as a result of the loss of lowland heath areas caused by changes to forestry and farming practices.

But Kitty Brayne, Aren't Birds Brilliant project officer at the RSPB, said numbers of woodlark were now on the increase in Breckland where wildlife officials and the Forestry Commission were working together to create new habitats for the bird to nest.

She added that there was a “very good chance” that birdwatchers would see the woodlark at Brandon Country Park, which is known to be nesting at a newly created area of heather.

“This is a fantastic opportunity to see and hear this remarkable bird, which are now rare in the UK. Visitors will hear the male woodlark's flute-like song, one of the finest around, while he spirals up and down singing his heart out to defend his territory,” she said.

New heaths from recently felled parts of Thetford Forest provide good nesting cover, plenty of perches and lots of food for the woodlark. The Aren't Birds Brilliant event at Brandon Country Park will take place from Saturday to Wednesday.

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