Heathland Species

Heathlands are home to some of the UKs rarest species

Wildlife among the heathers

Heathlands support a whole host of wildlife. Bees buzz around the bulbous blooms of bell heather and more delicate stems of ling heather. Adders and common lizards bask in the sun on bare patches of ground, while metallic green tiger beetles scuttle across sandy soils. In wetter areas, sphagnum mosses form a spongy, sopping layer and sundews glisten in the sun, waiting to ensnare unsuspecting flies.

The scattered cover provides ideal conditions for breeding birds. Listen out for the distinctive ‘churring’ of a male nightjar on a balmy summer evening; superbly camouflaged by their grey-brown mottled plumage, they nest on the ground. Much more conspicuous is the Dartford warbler, often spotted perched on a prominent gorse branch singing its heart out.

Heathland Conservation Projects:

Heath Tiger Beetle Project

Typical Heathland Species

Click on a specis to find out more about them

Nightjar Gorse
Woodlark Round-leaved sundew
Dartford warbler Heath spotted-orchid
Stonechat Sphagnum moss
Adder Silver-studded blue butterfly
Grass snake Green tiger beetle
Common lizard Heath tiger beetle
Slow worm Small red damselfly
Sand lizard Golden-ringed dragonfly
Ling heather Coss-leaved heather
Bell heather