World Wetlands Day 2008 -- United Kingdom
Report of World Wetlands Day 2008
Saltfleetby-Theddlethorpe NNR, Lincolnshire, England
Saltfleetby-Theddlethorpe Dunes stretches for some 8km along the Lincolnshire Coast. There are constantly changing habitats shaped by the wind and sea. These are home to a wealth of plants, birds and insects. The habitats include freshwater marsh, sand dunes, saltmarsh and beach. The national and international importance of this coastline has been recognised by Natural England through the creation of the NNR.
We decided to organise a practical task in order to help us manage the habitat. Initially the main task was to help protect the rare marsh pea (lathyrus palustris). This plant is particularly rare in the UK and can easily be shaded out by competing vegetation. We were hoping people could cut back the invading scrub which was shading out the plant.
However, a considerable amount of rain fell a few days before which meant the conditions were unsuitable for the volunteers. So, we decided a more appropriate task (on dry land!) would involve cutting back an area of scrub which was rapidly colonising the dune grassland. We cleared a large area using bowsaws and loppers. The day was thoroughly enjoyed by all.
This area will now be traditionally managed by grazing with cattle to help control the encroachment of scrub and maintain the important floral communities found on the dune grassland.
The site is located on the north east coast of Lincolnshire, to the east of the A1031, between Saltfleet and Mablethorpe. There are 6 car parks a short distance from the main road. There is also a 850 metre easy access nature trail, with a level surface suitable for wheelchairs.
Grid reference: TF469918
Site Office: 01507 338611