Fifteen Days Out in South Wales – Cardiff Bay Wetland Reserve

The Cardiff Bay Wetland Reserve is green and cheerful, with all the coots busy with their nests, the undisturbed reedbed and the grey cygnet. But of course it still maintains a surreal air. One does not need to know that Cardiff bay used to be a salt mash, mudflats, a kind of vital habitat that is disappearing worldwide due to development, and those mudflats, however polluted and stinky, were gone after the barrage in 2000 turned the bay into a fresh water lake, which maintains a surreal air, however blue and pleasant.

Maybe it’s just the looming Doctor Who box always visible along the walking path to the barrage.

To compensate for the loss of the salt marsh the Cardiff Bay Wetland Reserve was created, but it’s a completely different ecology so the birds that were using the mudflats had to leave, to be replaced by other species. Hopefully they will have found home at nearby Newport Wetland, which was planned as part of the compensation program and is now an established protected area.

I wonder what John Patrick Crichton-Stuart, third Marquess of Bute, would think of all this.