> CCW Species & Habitats information
> LIFE Natura 2000 Programme for Wales
> Natur Cymru
> BBC Nature of Wales
Biodiversity is special and uniquely accessible. Visit any patch of land or water and it’s literally teaming with life. Our native wildlife comes in many shapes and sizes and its presence is not always obvious. But it is out there in our parks and gardens, farmland, woodland, boggy areas, rivers and ponds, in our seas, in our soil and on the highest mountains.
The terrestrial habitats of Wales supports a rich variety of plants an animals and includes many species found in Britain and species unique to Wales. The Radnor lily, spotted rock-rose are not found in Britain outside of Wales and a type of fish present in Lake Bala- the gwyniad is found only in Wales and nowhere else in the world.
Wales has 20 Special Protection Areas for vulnerable birds and 92 Special Areas of Conservation for other rare species and threatened natural habitats. Together they are known as Natura 2000 sites, and along with areas across Europe, they form an unparalleled conservation network of international importance for wildlife. Wales’ Natura 2000 network covers more than 700,000 hectares (8.5% of Welsh land area and 35% of territorial waters).
LIFE Natura 2000 Programme for Wales
Snowdonia–home to artic-alpine and other rare plants.
Morfa Harlech & Morfa Dyffryn-part of a sand dunes system that sweeps from the Mawddach estuary along the shore of Cardigan Bay. A beautiful place to visit and with nationally scarce plant and invertebrate species.
Cors Caron peat bogs in Ceredigion, with plants that are adapted to the acidic conditions such as sun-dews, bog rosemary and cotton grasses.
Gower coast - managed by the National Trust, Worm's Head tidal island and limestone cliffs are rich in plant life particularly in in late spring and early summer. Breeding birds include kittiwakes, guillemots, razorbills and, occasionally, peregrines and choughs.
Red Squirrel- visit the Anglesey and the Clocaenog Forest in north Wales, in mid Wales, the forests around the Tywi valley hold small numbers of red squirrel.
Red Kite- this iconic bird is now established over much of Wales after expansion from their mid-Wales stronghold.
Why not visit a Red Kite feeding station?
Marsh Fritillary butterfly- Mynydd Mawr in Carmarthenshire is one of the remaining strongholds of the Marsh Fritillary, while The Great Orme in North Wales is the best place in Britain to see the endangered Silver-studded Blue
Marine life- Cardigan Bay enjoys a rich marine environment, full of wildlife. Throughout the year you regularly find bottlenose dolphins, harbour porpoise, Atlantic grey seals and a variety of bird life.
Learn more about marine life
For lichens, bryophytes and vascular plants, endemic eyebright species, heathland, liverworts and lichen-rich Sessile Oak woodland and spectacular scenery visit Cadair Idris
More species rich plant areas in Wales
Wales is blessed with an exceptional diversity of habitats and our flora and fauna include many distinctive species. Many of these species and habitats are of national, European or international importance, so we have a collective responsibilty in ensuring we conserve biodiversity -for this generation and for future generations to come.
There are significant challenges ahead: Crucially, we need to preserve the places where wildlife lives, to get these areas in the best condition we can for wildlife and for people. A host of non-native invasive species are threatening our wildlife on land in our coastal environments and in our seas. Our farmland birds are in decline, our bees and butterflies are dwindling and we need a better picture of what’s happening to our marine life beneath the waves.
In Wales, the approach to biodiversity and ecosystem conservation and enhancement pools expertise and closes the gap between those who deliver action in Wales and those who are able to provide strategic advice, guidance and support. Nine Ecosystem Groups and a Species Expert Group contribute to the action planning process which is maintained and developed by the Wales Biodiversity Partnership (WBP) with support from the WBP Support Team, the WBP Working Groups,the Local Biodiversity Action Plan (LBAP) Partnerships and Local Record Centres (LRCs). For further information visit Ecosystems & Species Expert Groups
BIODIVERSITY : What is Biodiversity? | Biodiversity in Wales | Ecosystem Approach