Keeping Orford Ness special
Keeping Orford Ness special is a major task. Different areas need different management approaches, and we work hard to allow visitors to enjoy the site safely in ways that preserve the character of the landscape and protect the wildlife. An ongoing effort in collecting stories and research allows us to tell you ever more about the human history of the Ness.
Water levels are monitored carefully on the marshes to provide feeding areas for wading birds and sheep used for grazing these areas to provide the variation in grass height that the birds need to nest.
The fragile shingle habitat requires protection from disturbance; even walking on it causes irreparable damage. To the north of the site fluctuations in the gull colony are monitored and a major project to regenerate salt marsh, a habitat that is shrinking elsewhere in the estuary, continues.
Behind the scenes
Keeping it running
The Ness is a hostile environment so there's a lot of maintenance and repairs to do.
Watching the wildlife
Surveying and recording the habitats and wildlife is the first step in conserving their future.
The Ness still holds many secrets. Discovering and sharing them is an ongoing task.
Sharing our stories
From films to magazines, TV to radio, there's a lot to tell and many who want to see and hear.
With the RSPB we embarked on a major project, funded by the European Union and other partners, to secure a sustainable future for wildlife in the Alde-Ore Estuary.
Building in part on the success of two previous EU LIFE programme projects, the marshland habitat has been improved to target bird species on the Ness and on Havergate Island, new coastal lagoons created, and we are working with our neighbours to protect the rare shingle habitat.