MORE than 30 internationally important bird species have made their home at the South Humber bank’s award-winning wildlife mitigation site in the last four months.
Proving the value of purpose-built wetland areas, which allow industry and nature to thrive side-by-side, the number and variety of birds and wildlife is constantly monitored at Stallingborough’s Cress Marsh Mitigation site.
Of the 81 bird species recorded on site since the beginning of wintering bird season in September, 32 are target SPA species including whooper swan, tufted duck, teal, redshank, pink-footed goose, peregrine, little egret, lapwing, greylag, and curlew. Meanwhile other wildlife has included the resident roe deer.
“As the wetland areas have become more established then so has the birdlife both in the variety and the numbers Cress Marsh is attracting. We are delighted with the development of the site and would like to take this opportunity to also thank the official volunteers who help us observe and record the wildlife here,” said North East Lincolnshire Council Ecology Technician Siân Niblo.
News of Cress Marsh’s continued success comes as the planning of a second such mitigation area continues. As reported earlier this month, Novartis Grimsby has transferred 35 acres of its land as a legacy to create another such site. Called Novartis Ings, it will sit right next to the Humber estuary.
Cress Marsh is under the management of North East Lincolnshire Council and the new site, once constructed, will also be looked after by the authority’s Ecology department as part of the £42m SHIIP, (South Humber Industrial Investment Programme).
With a desire to transform the industrial fortunes of the area in the decade ahead, the council wanted to offer business and industry a reason to invest in the area and the mitigation sites provide that.
The Humber Estuary is designated a Special Protection Area (SPA) and Special Area of Conservation (SAC), a SSSI, and a Ramsar site due to its importance as feeding, breeding and roosting habitats for both migratory and resident bird populations.
As a result, companies that want to develop along its banks must source and create offset wildlife areas as part of strict planning requirements. This can take months in the planning, with sometimes lengthy delays. Cress Marsh, which scooped a 2020 national planning award, offers companies such land, ready-made. Novartis Ings will provide the same offer once developed.
Also part of SHIIP is the new business park at Stallingborough, which will be the new home of myenergi, the improvements to the A1173 and the new Humber Link Road.
Support for SHIIP has come from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), the Humber Local Enterprise Partnership, (HLEP), and the Greater Lincolnshire Local Enterprise Partnership (GLLEP).