Wildlife & Countryside
Swell Wood (RSPB)
Just a mile or two outside Curry Mallet lie the ancient oaks of Swell Wood, part of a continuous strip of woodland extending some 10 miles (15 km) along the ridge from Langport to the Blackdown Hills. It has the largest colony of breeding grey herons in south-west England – more than 100 pairs and a small number of little egrets nest here. Between March and June is the best time to come and see the spectacle. If you’re lucky, you might see a dormouse among the hazel trees, while wildflowers such as bluebells cover the woodland in spring.
Look out for primroses and orchids, too. We manage the woodland to benefit the dormice, woodland birds, butterflies and plants. You can explore the RSPB’s two nature trails and hide, which are open at all times. For further information, click here.
West Sedgemoor (RSPB)
West Sedgemoor is part of England’s largest remaining wet meadow system. Set among the Somerset Levels and Moors, it has the largest lowland population of breeding wading birds such as lapwings, snipe, curlew and redshanks in southern England. In winter, the controlled flooding on the wet meadows attracts birds in their thousands – ducks such as wigeons, teals, shovelers, pintails and mallards, and wading birds such as golden plovers, snipe and lapwings.