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Last Updated: Wednesday, 28 April, 2004, 08:11 GMT 09:11 UK
Fears for fenland's wading birds
Robert Coleman
The RSPB's Robert Coleman says the Washes flood quickly
Spring floods have sparked a warning that wading birds could disappear from the Cambridgeshire Fens over the next few decades.

The Ouse Washes are home to one of the largest populations of breeding waders in lowland England.

Spring floods now happen most years but the RSPB says the latest flooding has had a devastating effect on this year's breeding season.

The nests of up to a 1,000 pairs of birds have been washed away.

Charity spokesman Robert Coleman said: "We've got an increasing amount of development and improvements in drainage in the surrounding landscape.

"When we do get large amounts of rainfall it very quickly gets into the system and floods the Ouse Washes."

The RSPB says unless something is done fast, the waders could disappear from the Cambridgeshire landscape.

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