Fontmell Down

Large chalk downland valley near Fontmell Magna

This superb chalk downland site is a large valley of 145 acres. 31 species of butterfly are regularly recorded, plus 7 others seen at odd times.


Site Details

Near Fontmell Magna (South of Shaftesbury) f
Butterfly species include
  • Silver-spotted Skipper
  • Dingy Skipper
  • Grizzled Skipper
  • Small Blue
  • Common Blue
  • Brown Argus
  • Chalkhill Blue
  • Adonis Blue
  • Dark Green Fritillary
  • Marbled White
  • Gatekeeper
  • Meadow Brown
  • Small Heath
View of the silver spots on the underwing of this butterfly
Moth species
  • Barred Tooth-striped Moth
  • Mother Shipton (day-flying)
  • Bruente Companion (day-flying)
  • Wood Tiger (day-flying)
  • Five and Six Spot Burnets (day-flying)

Mother Shipton moth, showing the hag's face made by the wing markings.

Mother Shipton moth. Photo: Mel Bray

Other species
  • Orchids
  • Yellowhammer
  • Skylark
  • Dormouse
 
Habitat type/features

Chalk Downland

Site of Special Scientific Interest

 
Location

Grid ref: ST88/17 (OS Landranger Sheet 183; Explorer series 118).

From A350 Shaftesbury-Blandford road at Fontmell Magna, turn east up the minor road signposted for Ashmore. Park before reaching the crossroads at the top of the steep hill.

 

Owned/
Managed
by

National Trust
Dorset Wildlife Trust
 

 

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