WWT Martin MereWWT Martin Mere
is a wetland reserve
managed by the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust
at Burscough, Lancashire
, six miles from Ormskirk
and ten miles from Southport
). It is one of nine reserves managed by the charity
, and it is designated an SSSI
(Site of Special Scientific Interest
, an SPA
(Special Protection Area
) and a Ramsar Site.
The name of the centre comes from the mere on the east side of the reserve which is ringed by 11 observation hides. On the west side of the reserve there are a number of pens providing habitats for birds from Africa, Australasia, North America, South America, Siberia, and Asia.
Martin Mere has its own "Domesday Book", listing (for 2002) 517 species of plant, 287 species of fungi, 1,368 species of invertebrates. 284 species of bird have passed through the reserve, as well as 28 species of mammal and 19 species of fish.
This reserve is at its best in winter, attracting huge flocks of pink-footed geese and wigeon, many whooper swans and occasional rarer birds such as the snow goose.
It is also excellent for wintering birds of prey such as hen harrier, peregrine and merlin.