Friday, 1 June 2012

RSPB Frampton Marsh

Yesterday I paid my first ever visit to Frampton Marsh, and I was not dissappointed. A major new extension to this coastal wetland reserve includes a reedbed, large freshwater scrapes and wet grassland. These habitats have all been created to bring the wildlife of the Wash closer to you.
New facilities include a visitor centre with toilets; the centre has a refreshments area where you can get a hot or cold drink and a snack. There are three hides – two with 360-degree views – and over 3 km of new footpaths to explore.

Although I chose the worst day of the last three weeks to visit, it was dull, overcast and wet! I could see it is a cracking nature reserve, perfect for a relaxing walk or watching wildlife. Not the greatest image of a tree sparrow you will ever see, but they were feeding just the otherside of the panoramic windows in the visitor centre, along with yellowhammers…wonderful!
Tree Sparrow
A visit to Frampton Marsh will appeal to a variety of visitors. There is plenty to do for families from bug hunting, pond dipping or you could just enjoy a picnic and grab a cup of tea from the visitor centre.

RSPB Frampton Marsh is situated on one of the best wetlands for wildlife in Europe: The Wash. There are lots of different habitats to explore including reedbeds, wet grassland and freshwater scrapes and don’t forget to go up on to the sea bank and look out over the saltmarsh, which is one of the largest in the world! The reserve is free to visit and the visitor centre is open daily from 10am to 4pm (until 5pm on weekends in summer). Binoculars can be hired free of charge and for those budding nature detectives, you can hire a wildlife explorer backpack from the visitor centre which can be taken out around the reserve.

There are free games available for children to play, these are themed on the wildlife of the reserve. The ‘Kids’ Zone’ in the 360 hide has a specially created area in the center for children’s activities. Dogs are welcome on the public footpaths and sea banks, but not on the trail around the reedbed or to the hides. There is even a dog hitching post and water bowl outside the visitor centre.

And the wildlife comes pretty close too!