Work under way on Lowestoft wetland site

Hayley MaceAfter generous donations from wildlife enthusiasts, work to create a 1,000 acre wetland habitat on the edge of Lowestoft is under way.Suffolk Wildlife Trust launched an appeal last year to raise funds to buy new parcels of land to link the marshes in Oulton, Carlton and North Cove.Hayley Mace

After generous donations from wildlife enthusiasts, work to create a 1,000 acre wetland habitat on the edge of Lowestoft is under way.

Suffolk Wildlife Trust launched an appeal last year to raise funds to buy new parcels of land to link the marshes in Oulton, Carlton and North Cove.

Now the �50,000 which was raised is being spent on expanding the wildlife habitat to make the area more robust against the effects of climate change and to allow the many protected species which live on the marshes to move around freely.

The trust has just purchased a section of land at Oulton to link two existing pieces of managed marshland, which will now be drained and used for grazing.


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Matt Gooch, the trust's Broads warden, said that work has been going on throughout the winter. 'We have carried out loads of dyke re-profiling and foot drain work to improve drainage on the marshes.

'From the end of March, the heavy work will stop because it is bird breeding season then until the late summer. Then next winter we'll do more drainage work,' he said.

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It is hoped that enough sections of land can be purchased in the future to connect the marshes together through the southern broads near Lowestoft.

Mr Gooch added: 'Since we started this work, we've already seen lots of new species of birds coming to the marshes, including widgeon, redshank, snipe and green sandpiper, which is great and shows that this wetland habitat is needed.

'We've also had lots of visitors and many birdwatchers. It is really nice for people who live locally and those who donated money to be able to come down to the marshes and see what is going on.

'Everyone is really positive and pleased to see the marshes being taken back under management in this way and being protected for the future.'

A Suffolk Wildlife Trust spokesman said that a special event to thank local supporters and donors is being planned to be held in the summer.

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