Bird watching on the bay

Birdwatching on the bay

Birdwatching on the bay:

Birdwatching on the bay makes Morecambe Bay one of the finest sites for birdwatching in Britain.

For a considerable portion of the year, Morecambe Bay is home to one of the highest concentrations of birds in all of Europe.

The foreshore is a haven for birds and the retreating tide leaves behind a whirl of shifting patterns.

Birdwatching on the bay

The abundance of food and protected nesting places offered by Morecambe Bay’s sheltered coastlines and islands attract tens of thousands of birds, including gulls, wildfowl, terns, cormorants, and many other species.

The best time for bird watching occurs in the spring tides as the birds are concentrated close inshore on the salt marshes or shingle beaches.

The most striking feature of the bay is its size – centred on the 310 square kilometres of intertidal sand flats.

The bed of the Bay is mainly sand mixed with some silt.

It is an outstanding combination of habitats from off-shore islands to salt marsh and sand dunes.

Bird watching on the bay

The Arnside/Silverdale and Bowland areas are designated as ‘Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty, all testifying to the richness and importance of the area for wildlife.

Furthermore, set against the magical backdrop of the Lakeland fells, it’s an ever-changing world of water and sand.

The sand is shaped by the constant ebb and flow of the tides, making it home to one of the largest concentrations of birds in Europe.

Tens of thousands of waders, wildfowl and gulls winter or breed, or pass through on their migrations from the Arctic to Africa.

Bird watching on the bay

Consequently, making it of truly national and international importance.

One of the best places for bird watching is Morecambe Promenade.

There is always something to see throughout the year and at any state of the tide.

However, the best bird watching occurs between late August through to late May.

The best days are on days when the tide is higher than 8.5 meters.

Tides between 9 and 9.7 meters are the best as they allow more time to cover the area as the tide ebbs and flows.

Warning: It is essential to consult the tide times before venturing out onto the Bay. Tide heights can be affected by strong winds, especially from the west.

Thank you to Gordon Akitt and Steve Lea for the use of their photographs.

 

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