Wildlife through the seasons at Formby
Spring is a wonderful time of year at Formby as the air is filled with the sights and sounds of wildlife waking up and rare species creating new life. From the green flashes of male sand lizards, the gentle buzz of vernal mining bees, the loud ratchet mating call of natterjack toads to the sweet, unbroken song of a skylark in flight.
Amazing Amphibians and Rare Reptiles
The Sefton Coast sand dune system is recognised as one of the most important dune habitats in North West Europe and is designated as a Site of Special Scientific Interest. The mobile dunes create homes for rare species such as natterjack toads, sand lizards and great crested newts. Spring is an exciting and important time of year as these special residents begin their breeding journey to hopefully increase their declining populations.
" It’s such an exciting and important time for natterjack toads. We know how tempting a dip or paddle in the dune pools can be for people and dogs, but by sticking to the sea we can help these special creatures have the best chance of breeding."
The spring air is filled with the beautiful sound of birdsong from skylarks and green woodpeckers to warblers including willows, chiffchaffs and white throats. Groups of migrating, wading birds such as dunlin can be found resting and re-fuelling on the shore. A whole host of birds are also heading to our shores to feed, breed and spend the summer with us including swifts and wheatears.
Beautiful butterflies always catch visitors eyes but there are many overlooked insects buzzing around in Spring too. All have such an important job to do pollinating flowers, plants and trees.
Formby’s dunes, heathlands, grasslands and planation woodlands create a mosaic of habitats where many rare and more common wildflowers and plants thrive. Spring is a great time to see splashes of colour from daffodils, bluebells and dune pansies, spot the fluffy tufts of creeping willow catkins or catch the sweet scent of coconut from gorse.
Formby is famous for being home to rare red squirrels and there’s nothing better than spotting one jumping through the trees. There are many other mammals hidden away and thriving on this precious landscape too.
In spring rabbits start to become more active. They can often be spotted grazing in the grasslands. This helps keep the grass short, creating space for rare flowers. When they graze and burrow in the soft sandy soils nearer to the dunes they’re also helping to stop the dunes becoming too fixed and overrun with invasive scrub plants.
" Formby is a haven for wildlife and people. Our mission is to create an environment where both can enjoy this special place in harmony. Every time you pay to park, scan your membership, give your time or simply take your litter home with you, you’re helping us protect Formby’s precious wildlife. Thank you for your support"