Gait Barrows

The only National Nature Reserve in the AONB, this site is of great importance for moths and some 800 species have been recorded including the rare silky wainscot.

Haweswater - part of Gait Barrows National Nature Reserve

Haweswater © Jon Sparks

Butterflies such as the Duke of Burgundy, high brown and pearl-bordered fritillary. The rich flora of the area also supports diverse invertebrate communities and is popular with dragonfly and damselfly as well.

For birdwatchers, there are also some real treats in store, such as green woodpecker, garden warbler, reed warbler, blackcap, bittern and marsh harrier. Over 1600 species of funghi flora have been recorded, further adding to the biodiversity of the reserve.

Woodland birds can be seen year round, but by far the best time to visit for flowering plants and butterflies is spring/summer.

Gait Barrows limestone pavement

Gait Barrows limestone pavement looking south to Trowbarrow © Jon Sparks
Due to the sensitivity of the habitats on this reserve, access away from permissive paths and rights of way is by permit only.  Click here to visit the Natural England website pages about Gait Barrows NNR