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Purbeck's landscapes and habitats

Find out about the different types of landscapes and habitats found in Purbeck.

Thousands of years of management by people have shaped Purbeck's landscape, and archaeological features such as field systems, stone walls, hill forts and castles give clues to how our ancestors lived.

Management by the people who live and work in Purbeck is still required to ensure that this thriving countryside is maintained.

  • Lulworth Cove Purbeck's coast

    Coastal and marine habitats in Purbeck are found in two areas: the exposed coast from Durlston Head to White Nothe, and the sheltered Poole Bay.

  • View of Corfe Castle from Kingston Purbeck's farmland

    Farmland in Purbeck is not just important for producing food. It is also important for the wild plants, mammals and birds that live in our special countryside.

  • Grassland Purbeck's grassland

    Coastal cliffs, Lulworth Ranges, the Purbeck Ridge and Corfe Common are all important grasslands in Purbeck.

  • Coppice woodland Purbeck's woodland

    Purbeck contains a variety of woodland habitats including ancient woods, veteran trees, parkland, conifer plantation, wet woodland and coppices.

  • Clouded yellow butterfly on Upton Heath. Credit Andy Fale Purbeck's heathland

    Heathland is a unique and special habitat. Over 5% of the UK's heathland is found in Purbeck.

  • River Frome water meadows Purbeck's rivers and wetlands

    The rivers Frome and Piddle are good examples of chalk rivers. Both rivers flow through Purbeck and out into Poole Harbour. The Harbour is well known for being one of the largest natural harbours in the world and is a huge wetland area for birds and other wildlife.

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