The Lower Derwent Valley
National Nature Reserve
"The barn owl capital of Europe"
This oft-overlooked part of East Yorkshire is in fact a wetland of international importance, recognised by the RAMSAR convention which aims to protect wetlands all over the world.
The unique crucible of conditions in the valley has resulted in a staggering array of wildlife with our reserve recognised not only for it's bird, botanical or invertebrate interest, but all three! Within the birds we have resident, wintering AND passage populations.
We have the heaviest population of barn owls anywhere in Europe, alongside kestrels, kites, buzzards, marsh harriers and hobbies for birds of prey enthusiasts. We have the only naturally occurring breeding population of corncrakes in England along with waders and wildfowl such as snipe, wigeon, whimbrels, lapwings, pintails, swans and geese. Healthy populations of songbirds provide a rich dawn chorus to enjoy.
it is truly a birdwatcher's paradise,
or a place to get the bug!
The Ings are sandwiched between two of the only three remaining examples of the very rare 'Northern Lowland Heath' habitat - Skipwith and Allerthorpe commons where reptiles such as adders and common lizards can be found basking in the sun. So much water in a landscape of course attracts newts and all manner of insects and hunting dragonflies are easy to spot.