Reedbeds & Saltmarsh
The reedbeds at Holton Lee are one of the largest present within Poole Harbour and are recognised ecologically for their importance as a habitat for birds. The reedbed is contained by the heath, the River Sherford and Lytchett Bay and acts as an interface between the freshwater from the land and river meeting the sea.
The management work aims to maintain the network of wet ditches and open water pools as well as maintaining the habitat available for the important species present which include amongst others reed warbler and marsh harrier. In the past the reedbeds were actively cut however the existing grazing pressures has meant that this option is not feasible. As a consequence of the deer numbers present Holton Lee actively manage the population in conjunction with our neighbours Natural England.
The saltmarsh habitat at Holton Lee is very difficult to access from land. Saltmarsh areas are characterised by extremes of environment, including temperature, salinity and low nutrient levels. The sites which are situated within and on the boundary of the reedbed are in a good condition and benefit greatly from their remote situation containing salt tolerant species including sea lavender and sea plantain.