Nature Reserve



In 2002 East Devon District Council opened a brand new Local Nature Reserve at Colyford Common.

The Council purchased 27 acres of tidal marsh at Colyford which, together with 6 acres of similar land owned by the Burgesses of Colyford, forms a 33 acre nature reserve.

The site is managed by East Devon District Council Countryside Service and is known as Colyford Common Nature Reserve.

The access route to the common starts south of the village on the Seaton Road at the side of Springfield, the Goose Fayre field.




Colyford Common is an important site for many of the birds that live on the Axe Estuary and through careful management, the number of birds using this area will increase.

Among the many species found here in Summer are various warblers which abound in the areas of reed and sedge around the marsh, and a small population of redshank which make their nests in the large tussocks. Redshanks only breed at two locations in the County, the upper Axe estuary being one of them.

Winter brings a different range of species, many of which are visiting from the far north. Flocks of widgeon feed on the saltmarsh and large numbers of wading birds such as curlew can be seen in the area.



Some of the resident species are also worth looking out for and probably the most popular of these are the little egrets which often feed in the ditches. Kingfishers are also fairly common here and, although less easy to see, they can often be heard as they fly up and down the ditches looking for fishing opportunities.

Just like the nearby Seaton Marshes Local Nature Reserve, there is a volunteer wardening scheme at Colyford Common. This is an opportunity for local people to become involved and take responsibility for the management of the nature reserve by, for example, providing a much needed monitoring service. Voluntary wardens also become involved in a range of wildlife recording and even help out with occasional practical management duties.

If you would like to know more about the Colyford Common Nature Reserve contact Eleanor Head at EHead@eastdevon.gov.uk