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Castle Espie to host BBC Two’s Winterwatch 2022

WWT Castle Espie Wetland Centre has been selected as one of three live locations across the UK to host BBC Two’s popular wildlife programme Winterwatch.

Following on from the huge success of BBC Autumnwatch earlier this year the watchers will again be coming to the WWT Castle Espie in Northern Ireland. Over the period of the week, starting on 18th January, zoologist and conservationist Megan McCubbin, one of four presenters on the show, will shine a spotlight on this area of international wildlife importance here in Northern Ireland.

Located on the shores of Strangford Lough, a designated coastal Area of Special Scientific Interest (ASSI), Special Protection area (SPA), Ramsar site, Marine Nature Reserve (MNR), National Nature Reserve (NNR) and Special Area of Conservation (SAC), Castle Espie Wetland Centre, managed by the Wildfowl & Wetlands Trust (WWT), the UK’s leading wetland conservation charity, is home to over 60 acres of pristine wetland habitat filled with a range of wildlife including rare and under threat species.

A mixture of tidal lagoon, eel-grass mats, woodland, salt marshes and reed beds offer the perfect habitat for all sorts of wildlife to thrive including a wide variety of water birds such as shelduck and shoveler and waders such as redshank, godwit and plover.

Speaking about the arrival of BBC Winterwatch, Paul Stewart, Centre Manager at Castle Espie Wetland Centre said; “We are thrilled that the BBC watchers are returning to Northern Ireland and basing themselves at Castle Espie. We are a centre for nature conservation, providing a window for the public on one of Northern Ireland’s great natural assets, Strangford Lough. Castle Espie is the only WWT wetland centre in Northern Ireland but we have global reach operating wetland centres and wetland focused restoration, conservation and protection in conjunction with local communities and governments across the globe.

Our work is shining a light on the importance of nature and the vital role that wetlands play for people and the planet which make us the perfect location for Winterwatch. I hope that the programmes presence at Castle Espie will encourage people both at home and further afield to value the wonderful natural capital we offer here on Strangford Lough.”

Winterwatch 2022 will be broadcast at 8pm on 18th to the 28th of January, Tuesday to Friday on BBC Two.

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