Kingcombe Meadows Nature Reserve

Kingcombe Meadows

Kingcombe Meadows © Tony Bates

A striking tract of unspoilt countryside spanning the full width of the valley of the River Hooke and surrounding the Kingcombe Centre.

The 185 hectare reserve is managed by Dorset Wildlife Trust as a working farm, grazed by cows & sheep, using traditional methods without artificial fertilisers, herbicides or pesticides. The result is a patchwork of fields & unimproved grassland, broken up by thick hedges, streams, ponds, ancient green lanes & wooded areas.

What can I see there?

  • Typical wildflowers in woodland & marshy areas.
  • Grassy meadows support many common species and also lady's mantle, corky-fruited water dropwort, pepper saxifrage, devil's-bit scabious & knapweed.
  • Butterflies include varieties of skipper & fritillaries
  • Birds abound with visiting summer warblers and woodland birds
Bee Orchid © Tony Bates

Bee Orchid © Tony Bates

Access to the Nature Reserve

There is a marked trail across the reserve which can be followed as a short or a long circular walk. There is also a marked tramper route, suitable for powered disabled vehicles, when ground conditions allow.

Burnett moth on common spotted orchid © Tony Bates

Burnett moth on common spotted orchid © Tony Bates