County Wildlife Sites

We are proud to announce that three areas on the Fursdon Estate have recently been recognised as County Wildlife Sites.

This means that these sites are of county-level importance for wildlife habitat and/or for special wild plants or animals and is a real feather-in-the cap for Fursdon!

Priority Habitat areas of conservation importance within the UK included: purple moor-grass and rush pasture, lowland meadow, lowland mixed deciduous woodland, wet woodland, wood pasture and parkland, and traditional orchards.

In areas of semi-improved grassland, notable species were discovered including:

  • Eight species on the Vascular Plant Red List for England, of which two are classified as vulnerable and six near-threatened.
  • One Devon Notable species, the Corky-fruited water-dropwort. The south-west is an important stronghold for this species which is otherwise rare across the rest of the UK
  • 161 species of flowering plant and fern recorded in this survey. However the true figure is likely to be higher.

The survey highlighted that a wide variety of important habitats occur within the grounds of the estate, which will in turn support diversity within other groups, such as invertebrate and bird species.

Other areas were identified as being “nearly there” but were not quite botanically species-rich enough. It is something that we are actively working on with the help of Devon Wildlife Trust.

We are ever-grateful for the advice and support that DWT gives us in order to maintain and protect such sites and nurture others as part of our wider environmental stewardship at Fursdon.

This year, visitors will have the chance to visit some of our meadowed areas as part of an extended walk through nature on Bank Holiday Monday (29th May) when we will run a ‘Meadows Day‘ at Fursdon. More information can be found here.