Barle Valley (grid reference SS723423) is a 104.2 hectare biological Site of Special Scientific Interest in Devon and Somerset, notified in 1997.
The site includes the Somerset Wildlife Trust's Mounsey Wood Nature Reserve and Knaplock and North Barton SSSI notified in 1954. The site is within Exmoor National Park.
The Barle Valley contains extensive tracts of ancient upland Sessile Oak ancient woodland which exhibit variations in structure and species composition as a result of difference in past management, geology and topography. The diversity of the site is increased substantially by areas of valley mire, heathland and acid grassland. Eighty five woodland vascular plant species have been recorded including thirty one ancient woodland indicators from a single compartment. The meadows are one of the few sites for Great Burnet (Sanguisorba officinalis) on Exmoor. Springs emerging from the base of sandstone slopes generate nutrient poor acid mires dominated by Sphagnum and Polytrichum moss carpets. The lichen flora is exceptional both for its luxuriance and in the number of rare species. One hundred and sixty five taxa of epiphytic lichens are present containing a remarkably large proportion of ancient woodland indicators giving the Barle a very high index of ecological continuity.
50.484°N 3.515°W / 50.484 -3.515 (Babbacombe Cliffs) SX926660 1976 Barle Valley Y 622.9 51°06′07″N 3°38′38″W / 51.102°N 3.644°W / 51.102 -3.644 (Barle Valley start ...
... Twenty species of butterfly have been recorded in the valley including the nationally scarce Marsh Fritillary (Eurodryas aurinia) and nationally vulnerable High Brown Fritillary (Argynnis adippe) ... The presence of Otters (Lutra lutra) on the Barle has been regularly recorded ...
Famous quotes containing the word valley:
“I will frankly declare, that after passing a few weeks in this valley of the Marquesas, I formed a higher estimate of human nature than I had ever before entertained. But alas! since then I have been one of the crew of a man-of-war, and the pent-up wickedness of five hundred men has nearly overturned all my previous theories.”
—Herman Melville (18191891)