Celebrate World Wetlands Day

A special bird watching walk will be held at Langstone in celebration of World Wetlands Day on the 2nd February.

This annual event is a celebration of wetlands but particularly the network of internationally important wetlands designated under the Ramsar Convention. Chichester Harbour is one such site designated in 1987 as an estuarine wetland important for over-wintering waders and wildfowl and breeding terns.

The theme for this year is ‘Wetlands and Agriculture' which is rather apt for Chichester Harbour as there is a strong linkage between farming and the wildlife with the Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB).

Siún Cranny, Director of Chichester Harbour Conservancy explains, ‘The intertidal mud is a rich source of energy in the form of snails, worms and other invertebrates but many species of birds also feed on grassland sites, many of which are designated as part of the Ramsar site. These areas known as coastal grazing marshes are complex mosaics of grassland, marsh, reedbed and saltmarsh habitats and are extensively used by feeding waders such as Redshank, Curlew and Black-tailed Godwit and by duck species such as Teal and Wigeon. Wader species such as Redshank and Lapwing will also breed in these habitats. Agricultural management through cattle grazing is vital to maintain these wetlands in suitable condition for these over-wintering and breeding birds.'

The guided walk on the 2nd February will be led along the shoreline at Langstone passing a number of coastal grazing marsh fields. To join us, meet at The Ship Inn at 10:30am, the cost is £4 per person to pay on the day.

For more information please contact the Harbour Office on 01243 512301.

Note: • 2 February each year is World Wetlands Day. This day marks the date of the adoption of the Convention on Wetlands on 2 February 1971, in the Iranian city of Ramsar on the shores of the Caspian Sea. Events held on the day raise public awareness about the importance and value of wetlands.



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