Watch our mini-documentary about Heathland in the South Downs National Park
Lowland heath, one of the rarest habitats on Earth, was created more than 6,000 years ago when Neolithic man began to clear the forests. The acidic sandy soil couldn’t be used for growing crops so was put aside for grazing and what emerged was a landscape of dry heath and wet bogs and within its dwarf forest of gorse and heather lies a magical world.
Explore this world in our ten minute documentary, showcasing some of the iconic wildlife that makes it so special.
Lowland heath is a fragile habitat. 95% of it has been lost worldwide and 20% of what is left, is in the UK. Fragmented by development and forest encroachment, the wildlife in these small islands of heathland remains highly vulnerable.
However, great efforts are being made to bring back grazing and to create wildlife corridors, linking the heathlands together, helping the animals and plants that live here to flourish.
Find out more about our work to protect the small pockets of lowland heath that remain in the South Downs through the Heathland Reunited project.