There’s a squelching noise coming from my feet. At least, I assume it’s from my feet. I can’t see them anymore – in their place is just a runny mess of brown mud with little bubbles escaping.
I’m out on the mudflats near the shore of a town called Norden in the north of Germany. The mud’s been revealed by the tide that has pulled the water away and so I have ventured out with a National Park guide to see what we can find. She pushes a spade down past the soft surface and brings up a pile of mud. Sifting through it we find worms and crabs and all sorts of other small critters.
This is the Wadden Sea – a unique landscape that hosts a habitat found nowhere else in the world. More than 10,000 animal and plant species live around these coastal wetland environments that change constantly throughout the day with the movement of the tides.