WILDLIFE experts have revealed "ambitious" plans to boost habitats at a nature reserve.

Essex Wildlife Trust wants the green light to carry out work on the Blue House Farm reserve at North Fambridge.

Proposals include deepening three areas of the Round Marsh wetland, creating a raised walkway to a viewing platform, new banks to minimise disturbance to wildlife, and building a base for a future hide to view wildlife.

Excavated soil will also be used to create areas above the waterline for roosting and nesting birds on the 243-hectare site.

The proposals also include a new 2km long and 6ft high "anti-predator" fence, at an estimated cost of £115,000.

The wildlife trust says: "This proposal forms part of the site wide project work at Blue House Farm nature reserve to enhance the wetland habitats for wildlife, chiefly wading and waterfowl bird species of conservation concern.

"This project will help Blue House Farm nature reserve contribute toward an important network of coastal habitats within the local region."

A similar planning application on another part of the reserve was given the go-ahead in May.

The trust hopes the site will provide the right wetland habitat needed for ground-nesting breeding waders such as lapwing, redshank and little ringed plover.

If the project gets the thumbs-up from Maldon District Council, the work is expected to start in September or October so there is no impact on nesting birds.