Parts of Needham Lake left high and dry by drought

Needham Lake

The wildlife islands at Needham Lake are no longer islands - and much of the wildlife has gone in search of water elsewhere! - Credit: Charlotte Bond

Wildlife experts in Mid Suffolk are confident that the creatures that live in and around Needham Lake will not be suffering even though part of the area has dried up.

Large areas of what is normally water around the woodland at the edge of the lake has totally dried up as the area has seen so little rain this summer.

A spokeswoman for the council said the water levels were lower than normal - but there had been occasions in the past when they had been lower and there was no immediate concern.

She added: “The prolonged period of hot weather and very little rain, means the water levels at Needham Lake are currently lower than normal.

“Thankfully, the lake and surrounding ponds have sufficient water for fish and wildlife. However, we continue to monitor the situation carefully and will take action to increase the availability of water if required.”

Needham Lake

The main part of Needham Lake does have water - but the level has fallen considerably. - Credit: Charlotte Bond

The Wildlife Islands on the edge of the lake are no longer islands - and there is limited wildlife because the waders and waterfowl you normally see there have moved on to the main lake.

Its level is also considerably lower than normal meaning there is a big step to get in or out which gives the swans an even greater advantage over smaller birds when trying to cadge food from visitors. 

Most Read

The spokeswoman said that if they did need to take water from the River Gipping, the council would have to apply to the Environment Agency for an abstraction licence although that was not immediately on the cards.

Well-known tourist attractions that dry out have often been a talisman for hot dry summers - in 1976 the mere in front of Framlingham Castle became dry and in 2009 the Scrape at Minsmere, one of the best-known locations for wildlife in the UK - became parched.

Minsmere Scrape

In 2009 the Scrape at Minsmere was left very dry. - Credit: Paul Geater

Both recovered once rain fell again in reasonable quantities and the wildlife carried on with apparently few long-term ill-effects.