Giant ‘sandcastle’ built as home for returning sand martins

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t is hoped that hundreds of sand martins could soon nest at a Surrey nature reserve for the first time in 25 years, after conservationists created a vast 400-ton “sandcastle” to entice them.

The tiny birds typically visit the wetlands in Nutfield Marshes between March and September, after migrating thousands of miles from sub-Saharan Africa.

But the summer visitors have not nested there for a quarter of a century, and conservationists warn that their natural inland nesting sites in the UK have decreased in recent years.

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