Wildlife watching at Freshwater West
Freshwater West is backed by a natural dune system and expansive wetland known as the Castlemartin Corse. This area is home to a whole host of habitats, from rare plants to communities of ground-nesting birds and interesting insects.
To help you get closer to nature, we’ve opened up a network of new permissive paths that lead to a beautiful timber bird hide. The hide, which is free to use, has been designed to neatly nestle into the landscape and is a must-visit for wildlife watching.
Five birds you might see during your visit
- Marsh Harrier
Look for them flying over the reed bed. One was actually present when our bird hide was being built.
- Cetti’s Warbler
A resident along the scrubby edges in summer and winter, they’re skulking birds and seldom seen. Listen out for their loud bursts of song, a piercing chink-chinka-chinkachink.
- Water Rail
More often heard than seen, water rail are fairly common and found in the reed bed. Keep an ear out for their distinct call, it sounds like squealing piglets.
- Grey Heron
Unmistakable with long legs and a long beak, you’ll find grey heron around the wetland. They feed on small mammals, amphibians and fish, and sometimes circle high up into the sky.
A small flock can often be seen here, typically feeing on seeds on the Gupton Farm side of the site. They have a very melodious song and twittering flight call.
The bird hide was actually funded by our Neptune coastline campaign, a people-powered initiative established over 50 years ago to help preserve our special places by the sea. Your kind contributions have enabled us to create a brilliant base for wildlife watching… thank you!
So bring along the binoculars and see the flora and fauna that call this special place home.