Ellis Meadows

    Getting There

    The site is located adjacent to the River Soar and is best reached along the Riverside Walk/Sustrans cycle way on foot or by bicycle.  If this is not possible, car parking is available at the nearby National Space Centre or Abbey Pumping Station (during events only).  Access is off Corporation Road to these car parks with extremely limited parking on the road.

    Managed By
    Leicester City Council
    Wild places

    Total species seen at this site: 403

    Description

    Until 2015 this site was a piece of regularly mown amenity grassland which formed part of the former John Ellis School site (the school was demolished in the early 1990s).
    The area was identified as part of a strategic flood alleviation scheme with works planned along the River Soar to improve flood storage during storm events.  Fortunately both the Environment Agency and City Council sought to implement Blue-Green techniques for flood storage rather than rely on traditional engineering methods that could have resulted in high walls and hard infrastructure.


    The site was designed to include a large and permanent area of open water, meadow areas, shrub and tree planting as well as retaining its mature White poplar and Crack willow trees along the boundary.

    Wildlife Highlights

    The new habitat types were seeded with a mix of native neutral grassland wildflowers and the banks of the lakes were planted with native marginal plants to provide good diversity over a short period.  Native tree and shrub planting has also provided additional habitat for birds.

    The site is surprisingly species-rich considering the short period it has had to establish.  The open waters are a haven for dragonflies and damselflies.  Common amphibians breed and freshwater mussel and other invertebrates have colonised from the nearby watercourse and ponds.  Little egret, Grey heron, Mute swan and Mallard are regulars. Swifts and swallows feed off the insects with bees, hoverflies and other insects recorded within this Buzzing Hotspot.


    Group Common name Latin name Last seen
    Beetles14 Spot ladybirdPropylea quattuordecimpunctata18/04/2019
    Beetles16 Spot LadybirdTytthaspis sedecimpunctata19/04/2019
    Beetles2 Spot LadybirdAdalia bipunctata30/05/2019
    Beetles22 Spot LadybirdPsyllobora vigintiduopunctata17/04/2019
    Beetles24 Spot LadybirdSubcoccinella vigintiquattuorpunctata01/05/2019
    Beetles7 Spot LadybirdCoccinella septempunctata15/03/2019
    Trees, Shrubs & ClimbersAlderAlnus glutinosa17/02/2017
    WildflowersAlsike CloverTrifolium hybridum20/08/2018
    Slugs & SnailsAmber SnailSuccinea putris20/08/2018
    WildflowersArrowheadSagittaria sagittifolia04/09/2013
    Bees, Wasps, AntsArtichoke Gall WaspAndricus foecundatrix29/09/2017
    Trees, Shrubs & ClimbersAspenPopulus tremula29/04/2019
    WildflowersAutumn HawkbitScorzoneroides autumnalis13/08/2018
    Dragonflies and DamselfliesBanded DemoiselleCalopteryx splendens17/07/2019
    Flies, Gnats and MidgesBee FlyBombylius major20/03/2019
    Trees, Shrubs & ClimbersBird CherryPrunus padus19/04/2019
    BugsBishop's Mitre ShieldbugAelia acuminata18/04/2019
    BirdsBlack-headed GullChroicocephalus ridibundus15/03/2019
    Dragonflies and DamselfliesBlack-tailed SkimmerOrthetrum cancellatum04/07/2019
    WildflowersBlack HorehoundBallota nigra18/08/2018
    WildflowersBlack MedickMedicago lupulina29/04/2019
    WildflowersBlack NightshadeSolanum nigrum29/07/2015
    BirdsBlackbirdTurdus merula29/04/2019
    BirdsBlackcapSylvia atricapilla11/06/2015
    Trees, Shrubs & ClimbersBlackthornPrunus spinosa15/03/2019
    MothsBlood-veinTimandra comae20/08/2018
    Dragonflies and DamselfliesBlue-tailed DamselflyIschnura elegans31/08/2018
    BirdsBlue TitCyanistes caeruleus05/03/2019
    BugsBox BugGonocerus acuteangulatus16/04/2019
    Trees, Shrubs & ClimbersBramble agg.Rubus fruticosus agg.29/04/2019