Invaluable wetland habitat for rare species such as water vole and otter
Portbury Wharf lies on the land between Portishead and Royal Portbury Dock, adjacent to the Severn Estuary. Planning consent for the Port Marine housing development here was granted on condition that the developers designate a nature reserve on the adjoining land.
Large pools close to the foreshore of the estuary and the other areas of open water in the reserve provide an invaluable wetland habitat for rare species such as water vole and otter. Invertebrates like the hairy dragonfly can be seen here and greater horseshoe bat can be found hunting for insects here.
The grazing marsh areas are important for birds such as snipe and lapwing, and the hay meadows and hedgerows are rich in insect life, providing food and shelter for many small mammals, which in turn provide a meal for birds of prey including buzzards and owls.
In 2014 we are launching a new project, 'A Year in the Life of Portbury Wharf' which will document the changing wildlife throughout the year. From winter visiting curlews and the unforgettable dawn chorus of spring, to the summer skylarks and autumn hedgerow harvests, we will be following nature month by month to create a journal that captures the highlights of Portbury Wharf's fantastic wetlands habitat. We would love to include your stories, photos, poems, drawings and observations so if you'd like to get involved contact Community Groups and Partnerships Manager, Julie Doherty for more information.
Plans for the future include provision for an educational facility for local schools and groups.
The site is funded through Port Marine Management Company that receives income from each of the residents on site.
Species and habitats