The Suffolk Coast and Heaths, Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty are one of the finest parts of the country for scenery, wildlife and historic interest. The area stretches from Kessingland in the north to the Stour estuary in the south covering 151 square miles. Rich in wildlife it has many valuable habitats such as river estuaries, shingle beaches, reedbeds and heathland. The estuaries are nationally important for wading birds which feed and breed there.
The heathland is home to several rare and endangered species including the silver studded blue butterfly. Estuaries and mudflats are to be found all around the coast providing wonderful opportunities for wildlife observation throughout the year. Mudflats soon become colonised by specialist plants, with salt marsh grasses amongst the first to appear soon to be followed by sea lavender and sea aster. During summer the flora is colourful and at other seasons winter visitors and vast number of migrant birds enjoy these rich feeding grounds. The glories of these coastal habitats are fascinating and superb, whatever the season there is always something to see.
Marshland vegetation by late spring presents a profusion of colour to the eye. Some birds are resident throughout the year others arrive during the winter months like the water rail which breed here in small numbers. Spring is also the best time for woodland bird watching both resident species and those newly arrived migrants their songs ring out advertising their territories. During the autumn broad leaved woodlands are good for fungi especially after periods of heavy rain. Breckland is a specialised type of habitat found in Suffolk and many of the plants are unique to this area.
|Minsmere||Dunwich Heath||Orfordness||Carlton Marshes|