Somerset Levels and Moors - Mid Parrett wet farmland project

The Parrett floodplains lie within the Somerset Levels and Moors, the largest area of lowland wet grassland remaining in England.

Landscapes in the Thames Estuary near the site on reclaimed marshland on the Isle of Grain

Overview

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.  

Objectives

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

Progress

  • Started January 2010

Planned Work

The next phase of work 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.

Results

We have helped farmers with land adjacent to our Greylake reserve to enter a higher level of Environmental Stewardship, thereby increasing the area being farmed and providing more space for nature.  
 
In another part of the floodplain, we have worked with those farming more than half a square kilometre. In spring 2012 and 2013, this land held the highest density of breeding lapwing in the Somerset Levels outside our reserves.

Funding

  • Phase 1 - Part-funded by the EU Interreg WAVE project (January 2010-June 2013) and Natural England's Wetland Vision programme.
  • Phase 2 - Part-funded by the EU interreg WOW project (November 2012 to March 2015).

Download

PDF, 853Kb. Land management tips and advice for the common crane. 23 October 2015

Land Management for Wildlife: Common Crane
Tagged with: Country: UK Habitat: Farmland Habitat: Grassland Habitat: Wetland Project status: Ongoing Project types: Advocacy