Brown Hairstreak.jpg

Our Local Wildlife

50 years of Conservation Agriculture and the Holistic approach to farming management techniques has built a wonderful wild place where nature thrives alongside traditional farming practices. 

Downhead Manor Farm as a whole, is designated as a Local Wildlife Site (LWS). This classification means we have been identified as one of the county’s best sites for wildlife and work closely with Somerset Environmental Records Centre (SERC), helping to ensure the survival of this important area for wildlife, particularly the most important and threatened species and habitats. 

9+ years of ecological recording has been undertaken, most notably by Mr Mark Fletcher on behalf of the Butterfly Conservation, and has so far identified Bonn and Bern Convention, abundant IUCN Red Data List Species, abundant UK Biodiversity Action Plan Species and habitats, and abundant 1981 Countryside and Wildlife Act Schedules 1, 5 and 8 species including skylark, green-winged orchid, greater crested newts, corky fruited water drop-wort, white-letter hairstreak, brown hairstreak, hobby and transitionary bitterns. In total we have recorded a total of twenty nine species of butterfly so far out of around fifty nine resident butterflies and found over 500 Brown Hairstreak eggs to date.

Downhead Manor Farm is also renowned by both FWAG and the National Trust, among others, as leaders in the fields of Conservation Agriculture, conservation and ecological management. We have also been involved with a number of government environmental and conservation schemes over a number of decades and as an example, built the first UK’s above ground Biobed – used to host open days for the Environment Agency, Wessex Water, Natural England, Government Catchment Sensitive Farming, other similar bodies, and farmers. 

 Greater Butterfly Orchid

Greater Butterfly Orchid

 Early Purple Orchid

Early Purple Orchid