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


    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
    Mites, Ticks & PseudoscorpionsAcalitus brevitarsus08/08/2019
    BugsHawthorn ShieldbugAcanthosoma haemorrhoidale20/07/2019
    Trees, Shrubs & ClimbersField MapleAcer campestre18/04/2019
    Trees, Shrubs & ClimbersNorway MapleAcer platanoides08/08/2019
    Trees, Shrubs & ClimbersSycamoreAcer pseudoplatanus29/04/2019
    Mites, Ticks & PseudoscorpionsAceria campestricola24/06/2015
    Mites, Ticks & PseudoscorpionsCauliflower Gall MiteAceria fraxinivora20/08/2018
    Mites, Ticks & PseudoscorpionsAceria macrochela04/09/2017
    Mites, Ticks & PseudoscorpionsAceria tetanothrix20/08/2018
    WildflowersYarrowAchillea millefolium02/01/2019
    WildflowersSneezewortAchillea ptarmica20/08/2018
    MothsViburnum ButtonAcleris schalleriana01/09/2016
    BirdsCommon SandpiperActitis hypoleucos30/04/2014
    Beetles2 Spot LadybirdAdalia bipunctata30/05/2019
    BirdsLong-tailed TitAegithalos caudatus06/02/2017
    Slugs & SnailsSmooth Glass SnailAegopinella nitidula18/01/1990
    BugsBishop's Mitre ShieldbugAelia acuminata18/04/2019
    Dragonflies and DamselfliesSouthern HawkerAeshna cyanea20/08/2018
    Dragonflies and DamselfliesBrown HawkerAeshna grandis31/08/2018
    Dragonflies and DamselfliesMigrant HawkerAeshna mixta31/08/2018
    ButterfliesPeacockAglais io30/03/2019
    ButterfliesSmall TortoiseshellAglais urticae04/05/2018
    Flies, Gnats and MidgesAgromyza dipsaci18/07/2018
    BirdsKingfisherAlcedo atthis11/03/2014
    WildflowersCommon Water-plantainAlisma plantago-aquatica20/08/2018
    Trees, Shrubs & ClimbersAlderAlnus glutinosa17/02/2017
    Grasses, Rushes & SedgesMeadow FoxtailAlopecurus pratensis29/04/2019
    WildflowersMarsh-mallowAlthaea officinalis20/08/2018
    Flies, Gnats and MidgesAmauromyza labiatarum05/07/2017
    Slugs & SnailsGreenhouse SlugAmbigolimax valentianus07/03/2019