Birling Gap and the Seven Sisters
A popular coastal hub, where the South Downs meet the sea
Summer on the South Downs
We are so glad our visitors are enjoying our beautiful South Downs. Our car parks cannot be booked so on our busy days there may not be spaces when you arrive - please try again later if this happens. Please help us keep these areas special. Be safe, plan ahead and follow any signs. Leave gates and property as you find them. Protect plants and animals and take your litter home. Keep dogs under close control, especially near farm animals and during nesting season. Do not camp, light fires or barbecues unless it is is designated areas. Thank you for helping us keep our countryside safe.
Birling Gap in August
This grey green plant has tiny flowers that range in colour from pink through purple to deep red. The seeds or 'nutlet's grow up the stem in sets of four and turn dark red in autumn.
Males are a silvery-blue colour whilst the females are brown with a white fringe to the wings and a blue dusting near the body. They lay their eggs on horseshoe vetch
These frothy yellow flowers have a sweet, honey-like scent. It past times it was traditionally dried and used to stuff straw mattresses of monied ladies.
The striking black-and-white checks of the marbled white are unmistakeable. The adults can often be seen feeding on purple flowers, such as common knapweed and wild marjoram.
The pyramidal orchid has bright pinky-purple, densely packed pyramid of flowers. It can be found across the South Downs and is attractive to a range of butterflies and moths.
Broad bodied chaser dragonfly
This is an easy dragonfly to spot ponds, lakes and gardens. It regularly returns to the same perch after swift flights out across the water looking for insects.
The male has brilliantly-coloured blue wings, whilst the female is a rich chocolate brown. The both have a checkerboard margin to their wings. The caterpillars feed on the delicate yellow horseshoe vetch.
The small, yellow flowers and woolly appearance of kidney vetch make this plant easy to spoy.The small flowers are mainly yellow, but can also be orange and red.