Giant LEGO animals heading to Arundel

Kate the Kingfisher meeting visitors of the Arundel Wetland Centre

Kate the Kingfisher meeting visitors of the Arundel Wetland Centre

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A giant LEGO animal trail - the first of its kind in the UK - is coming to the Arundel Wetland Centre.

Giant brick characters, some up to twelve times life size, will be appearing alongside the real wildlife at the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust’s (WWT) Arundel nature reserve from the first May Bank Holiday weekend.

Young Isla Whisham with Mc Mallard. Picture by Adam Finch WWT

Young Isla Whisham with Mc Mallard. Picture by Adam Finch WWT

Amongst the LEGO animals will be Lottie the otter, made of 15,500 bricks; Flavia the Andean flamingo, standing tall on her long yellow brick legs; and Benedict the Bewick swan, stretching her brick wings.

Alongside the real kingfishers will also be Kate the LEGO kingfisher.

The brick characters have been specially created for WWT and this is be the first time they can be seen in Sussex amongst the real life animals that inspired them.

Dave Fairlamb, Arundel’s general manager said: “We’re thrilled to welcome the new species that are landing at Arundel Wetland Centre this spring. “We know our visitors old and new are going to absolutely love them.

“They’re a really fun way to highlight some of the animals WWT helps to protect, such as the iconic nene and our red-breasted geese.”

The eye-catching models were created by Bright Bricks, the UK’s only certified LEGO professionals, and Tom Poulsom, known as the LEGO ‘Birdman’.

In total, 120,300 LEGO bricks were used over 915 hours to make all nine characters. Lottie the otter and Bruce the red breasted goose took the longest time to make at 120 hours each.

The nature reserve hopes using the world’s most popular toy will encourage children to ‘build a better future for nature’.

“Here at Arundel Wetland Centre, we take particular pride in helping to conserve the Hawaiian goose (nene) the world’s rarest goose, which was originally identified as a species that needed protecting by our founder Sir Peter Scott when only 20 to 30 remained in the wild,” Mr Fairlamb said.

“Today we have 16 nenes here at Arundel Wetland Centre and the population in the wild is over 3,000.

“By using LEGO bricks as a building block, we’re hoping to inspire the next generation to continue Sir Peter’s work of saving threatened wildlife such as the nene.”

The LEGO trail is included in the admission price.