Heathland plants love nutrient-poor soil and thrive on the harsh wind blasted cliff-tops around here. With just over two percent of the world's lowland heathland, Cornwall's heathland is important on a worldwide scale. The mix of heathers, gorse, grasses, flowering plants and bare ground is home to a surprising number of animals from bees, birds and butterflies to lizards, adders and foxes.
Our Management of the land
In some areas we clear the gorse, through cutting or burning, to open up the area to wild flowers. Our Shetland ponies are out grazing year round which helps keep vegetation under control.
As ponies are selective grazers, they don’t tend to eat flowers, and are happy munching their way through grass stems, gorse and cut vegetation. They trample the ground which, in moderation, is beneficial as it opens up the sward allowing the establishment of annual plants and wildflowers. Our ponies are at work all year and happy in the blustery exposed conditions on the headland.
Wild flowers on the Knavocks
Rare species you may see here
You might see these other species too: Common Blue, Meadow Brown, Gatekeeper, Small Heath, Peacock , Wall Brown and Dark Green Fritillary. Sometimes migrant species such as Painted Lady and Red Admiral are also spotted.