Mid Parrett wet farmland project

The Mid Parrett Wet Farmland Project is a pilot scheme managed by the RSPB which supports farming and wetland wildlife in the River Parrett floodplain. We are working with the farmers who manage extensive wet grasslands in the Parrett floodplain, encouraging them to make good use of the Environmental Stewards.

General views of floodplain grassland, Greylake RSPB reserve, Somerset Levels, England


The Parrett floodplains lie within the Somerset Levels and Moors, the largest area of lowland wet grasslands remaining in England.
The project area extends from Langport downstream to Dunball and encompasses some of the most important grazing marsh habitat in the Somerset Levels and Moors. Populations of breeding waders have declined in the area since the 1970s and we are now working with farmers on the floodplains to rebuild these populations to their former glory. 


The main focus for the project is to work with the farmers who manage extensive wet grasslands in the Parrett floodplain. We are encouraging them to make good use of the Environmental Stewardship scheme, which can provide valuable financial support for those managing land within the floodplain.

Key Dates

January 2010 - Project started

Planned Work

Phase two is likely to see us work in additional parts of the Parrett floodplain, and with more farmers who have agri-environment agreements for the extensive management of the floodplains. This should result in land management which makes more space for breeding waders and wintering waterfowl.


We've helped farmers with land adjacent to our Greylake nature reserve to enter the Higher Levels of the Environmental Stewardship scheme. Thereby increasing the space for nature within the farmed area. 
In another part of the floodplain, we've worked with those farmers and in spring 2012 this land held the highest density of breeding lapwing in the Somerset Levels, outside of our reserves.


Phase one

Part funded by the EU Interreg WAVE project (January 2010 to June 2013), and funded by a mix of RSPB, Natural England and the EU’s Interreg IVA Cross Channel Programme known as ‘Working for Wetlands’.
Phase two
Part funded by the EU Interreg WOW project (November 2012 to March 2015).


Coast on a stormy day

Dr Richard Bradbury

Head of Environmental Research, Conservation Science

Tagged with: Country: England Habitat: Farmland Habitat: Grassland Habitat: Wetland Project status: Project types: Advocacy