All that will hopefully change with the installation of a new interpretation panel at Coronation Green, overlooking the reserve, where saltmarsh meets mudflats, making the perfect feeding and roosting site for waders and wildfowl.
The reserve, which is also part of a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI), is managed by staff at RSPB Pulborough Brooks, with the help of a team of four volunteer wardens who live in Shoreham.
Jenny Holter, an RSPB volunteer warden and member of Shoreham District Ornithological Society, said: “Many residents of Shoreham are unaware that there is an RSPB nature reserve in their midst.
“The Adur Estuary reserve is a little gem located in front of the houseboats and has a good variety of water birds present across the year, which can be easily seen from a variety of viewpoints around the town. Star species include redshank, oystercatcher and kingfisher.
“We have been working hard to raise awareness of the wildlife on the reserve, collaborating with Shoreham District Ornithological Society on a variety of projects.
“To support this work, a new interpretation panel has been installed at Coronation Green, providing information about the reserve and highlighting the key species that can be seen.”
The board explains Adur Estuary is a very special place and the saltmarsh and mudflats are important for birds all year round.
Winter is a tough for shorebirds and the reserve provides vital refuge where they can rest and feed undisturbed, as they try to conserve as much energy as possible.
In autumn and winter look for wading birds, including teal, redshank, snipe and lapwing. Curfew and greenshank are sometimes seen, while grey plover and knot are possible.
Regulars throughout the year include oystercatcher, little egret, cormorant and grey heron.
In spring and summer, you might see sandwich terns driving for fish and lapwing on the saltmarsh.
The information board, located just off High Street, near Adur Ferry Bridge, includes a map showing the extent of the nature reserve and suggested vantage points for the best views.
Visit www.rspb.org.uk for more information.
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