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Saturday, 3 January 2015

2nd January 2015 - Steart as you mean to go on...

Darren and I have started 2015 with a few changes to The Cotswold Birdwatching Company, one of these being a blog to follow recent trips and surveys we do, as well as to pick up hints on what wildlife to look for at certain times of the year when you are out experiencing wildlife on your own.

Today we visited a new site for us, Steart Marshes, in Bridgewater Bay. This wetland area was created by a partnership between the Environment Agency (EA) and the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust (WWT), to help mitigate the impact on our wildlife due to the rising seas caused by Climate Change. EA create these managed mitigation sites across the country, this particular one is to replace coastal wetland habitats such as saltmarsh currently being eroded. Its flooded twice a day by the rising tide, but due to a raised entrance to the estuary the area drains slower than the surrounding wetlands giving sediment time to settle.


As the above photo shows the habitat is looking pretty good and the birds are already using it in large numbers, a closer photo of the birds shows there to be both golden plover and lapwing present.


The site comes alive as high tide approaches, the waders from Bridgewater Bay are pushed onto Steart Marshes by the rising tide, as this tide rises several thousand dunlin, knot, curlew, lapwing and golden plover can be present. Quite a site!

Its not all about waders though with birds like this stonechat also utilising the mosaic of habitats available.


Definitely one for the future!

(NA)

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