Vale of White Horse Parishes
The following wildlife habitats fall within this parish. They are listed according to their associated landscape type or local character area.
If you want more information about any of the sites of special scientific interest (SSSIs) listed below, take a look at English Nature's Nature on the Map website. It may also be possible to find out a bit more about the unnamed wildlife habitats in the parish by contacting the Thames Valley Environmental Records Centre (firstname.lastname@example.org) and quoting the site code next to the habitat description.
The majority of these wildlife habitats are on private land and access to them is not possible without permission of the landowner, unless there is a statutory right of way. However, many wildlife habitats in the county are open to the public. More information on these can be obtained from the Oxfordshire Nature Conservation Forum.
Chalk Downland and Slopes
Site Code: 38M01
Area: 72.9 ha
Hackpen, Warren and Gramp’s Hill Downs SSSI
This site is one of the largest remaining areas of chalk grassland on escarpment of the Berkshire Downs in Oxfordshire. The downland would have once been covered in chalk grassland but now it survives only on the steepest areas such as this. Chalk grassland is a national nature conservation priority due to its rarity.
Chalk downland wildflowers that can be seen here include wild thyme, kidney vetch, horseshoe vetch, rockrose, autumn gentian, fragrant orchid and frog orchid. Eleven species of butterfly have been recorded here including chalkhill blue, brown argus and marbled white.
Site Code: 38M02
This site is a steep sided dry valley with banks of chalk grassland. Chalk grassland is now mainly restricted to steeper banks such as this and is a national nature conservation priority.
The richest areas are found where the grass is short. Wildflowers present include southern marsh orchid, which is more commonly found in marshy areas and only occasionally in chalk grassland. Other wildflowers include harebell, hairy violet, yellow-wort, horseshoe vetch and common spotted orchid. Among the extensive list of insects recorded here is the dark green fritillary butterfly.