North Meadow National Nature Reserve

North Meadow National Nature Reserve

Location Details


North Meadow is about 20 minutes walk north west of Cricklade town centre. Car parking and bus links can be found in the town, from where the Reserve can be reached by public footpaths. There is further parking in the layby to the north west of the Reserve entrance.

In spring, the meadow’s impressive display of snake’s head fritillaries appears, along with bright yellow clusters of marsh marigold and the pink of cuckooflower. At the same time, the diminutive adder’s tongue fern and the first of the early marsh orchids appear.

In spring, skylarks make nests amongst the grass, while in the hedges and tree hollows, great tits, blue tits, chaffinches, linnets and tree creepers settle in.

In summer, North Meadow bursts into colour with hay meadow flowers such as greater burnet and common knapweed, cowslip, meadow buttercup and yellow rattle; while the rest of the meadow is filled with ox-eye daisies, meadow rue and meadow sweet. There are also over 20 species of grass, including crested dog’s tail and yellow oat grass.
Along the banks of the Rivers Thames and Churn, reed buntings, grey wagtails and sedge warblers can be found, with swallows, sand martins and swifts dancing overhead.

In the summer months many interesting insects are to be seen buzzing around the beautiful hay meadow flowers, including brightly coloured burnet moths, dramatic blue damselflies and a host of beetles.

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