Ambassador of Norfolk Wildlife Trust and of Norfolk Day, Dr Ben Garrod, will journey across Norfolk on Friday 27 July to highlight some of the quirky, precious and unknown wildlife nature reserves as the county celebrates all that’s great in Norfolk.
He said: “This is going to be a full day exploring the best, most hidden, most surprising sites for wildlife in Norfolk, looking for both rarities and common species! We live alongside our wild neighbours, sharing homes with foxes, towns with otters and beaches with seals. Our skies are bursting with jewelled butterflies and our forests resounding with melodic birds. I am excited to get out there and explore all Norfolk has to offer. It’s great that NWT and Norfolk Day have partnered up to celebrate all things Norfolk. By showcasing our fascinating species and beautiful habitats, it shows how important wild places are to the people of Norfolk.”
Ben will start Norfolk Day right on the eastern edge, on Great Yarmouth beach looking at marine wildlife. Marine life is abundant in the sea off Norfolk, including more than 30 species of sea slugs, harbour porpoises, grey and harbour seals, alongside occasional sightings of sunfish and basking sharks.
He will then travel to NWT Upton Broad and Marshes
, on the lookout for Broadland specialities including marsh harriers, Norfolk hawker dragonflies and swallowtail butterflies.
Stops in south Norfolk include the smallest wildlife trust nature reserve in the whole of the UK, at just 0.025 hectares; a crucial common land, where Ben will talk to conservationists about their new Wildlife in Common project helping people reclaim their local commons; and an ancient woodland with a dark history, the fabled site of Babes in the Wood.
Two National Nature Reserves will end his East to West tour of the county. NWT Weeting Heath
is home to the enigmatic Norfolk plover (stone curlew); and NWT Roydon Common
, Norfolk’s largest remaining heathland where he will hopefully hear rare nightjars and spot bats.
Chief Executive of Norfolk Wildlife Trust, Brendan Joyce OBE said: “As the oldest UK wildlife trust working across the county, Norfolk Wildlife Trust is very much a part of Norfolk life and we are proud to be the first charity partner for Norfolk Day – an association we will be pleased to continue in the future. Celebrating Norfolk is a great way to highlight what we have around us that that makes Norfolk special. It is also a really important way in which charities like NWT can raise awareness of what we do to protect Norfolk and make it better for wildlife and people. We have a fragile and special landscape and exceptional species that need care and this is a great way to show everyone why they matter. For people too, enjoying our wild spaces are a vital part of healthy living and well-being. We hope you enjoy following Ben’s journey on social media and with Archant and Radio Norfolk and feel inspired to venture out yourselves over the summer.”
David Powles, EDP editor said: "I'm thrilled that the trust has chosen to become a charity partner for Norfolk Day. It does great work promoting and protecting our beautiful and precious county."
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