Much of the Watersmeet area is protected as a Site of Special Scientific Interest because of its important semi-natural woodlands, its coastal heath and its geology.
The priority now is to promote the fantastic variety of native trees of different ages which thrive there. Alien plants like rhododendrons, sycamore and conifers are generally removed. Glades are created among the trees to encourage wildlife, especially butterflies and dead wood is left for insects, birds and bats.
Light grazing by sheep and swaling (burning) ensure that coarse scrub and bracken do not take over, helping the heather regenerate. This traditional approach has proved very successful and the moorland at Countisbury is in a very healthy condition.
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Photo taken in Lynton and Lynmouth, Devon, UK
Misplaced? Suggest new location