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NE / NRW
Photo credit: Claire Install
The mosses are the third largest lowland raised bog in Britain. They are designated as a SSSI and a SAC for their habitat and are also part of a Ramsar Wetland of International Importance. A lot of management has been carried out since the site was almost destroyed by drainage for large scale commercial peat cutting, agriculture and forestry. Conservation work has removed forests, woodland and scrub, raised water levels and stopped nutrient enrichment. The Reserve is home to 26 species of dragonfly, most notably it is the only site in Wales and one of 6 sites in England containing the rare White-faced Darter dragonfly. Black Darter is a rare species locally but is common at the fen pools. Downy Emerald has been recorded here in the past.
The site has 10 entrances. There are 3 trails, the Mosses Trails, the Bettisfield Moss Trail and the History Trail, that are accessible to anyone plus an easy access trail to the Whixall Moss boardwalk. However to gain access to the whole site, a free permit is required. For this you will need to contact the NNR base (email email@example.com, tel 01948880362). Access to the Mosses Trails and easy access trail are from the Morris’s Bridge National Nature Reserve car park (SJ 493 355) . To get to both, follow the NNR signs off the A495 southeast of Whitchurch, Shropshire.
Grid reference: SJ 493 355. Nearest postcode: SY13 2PQ.