A DEPTFORD sandbank has been brought to life after a small colony of birds decided to nest there.

It is the first time the Sand Martins have chosen to nest in Deptford as it is rare for the birds to breed in greater London.

The small birds have been seen at the man made sandbank at the Creekside Discovery Centre, in Creekside, Deptford.

Signs have now been placed around the area so the nests are not disturbed.

News Shopper: Sand Martins The sandbank can be seen from the Ha’penny Hatch footbridge which goes over the Creek.

Eight holes have been discovered in the sand bank and six birds have been spotted by Creekside Education Trust Ecologist, Nick Bertrand and bird watcher Michael Paice.

Mr Bertrand said: “After 10 years of saying ‘we’re hoping’ I can now point to the sandbank when showing people the Creek and talk about how it is working. It is great seeing Sand Martins breeding in Deptford.”

Facts about Sand Martins

Sand Martins are the smallest of the Swallow and Martin family which come to breed in Britain each year.

Unlike most other birds they migrate by day and have flown around 3,000 miles from the south of the Sahara to be there.

In the late summer they will make the return journey back to the African plains.

Sand Martins are protected under the Wildlife and Countryside Act of 1981 with their nests. They are also listed in the amber category as a species of the European Conservation Concern.