Kingsdale Head

Regenerating an upland landscape through rewilding 

Water fall

At a glance

Location

Ingleton, Yorkshire

Area

1,504 acres

Start date

2020

Scale

Large

Habitats

Upland, Broadleaved woodland, Rivers and streams, Grassland and meadow, Heathlands and shrub and Blanket bog

Key species

Woodland birds, Tamworth pigs, Curlew, Short eared owl, Cattle, Brown trout and Green hairstreak butterfly

Rewilding actions

Extensive grazing, Tree Planting, Natural regeneration and Peatland restoration

Engaging people

Volunteering, Recreation and Research

Kingsdale Head covers 1,500 acres of dramatic upland landscape in the north-west corner of the Yorkshire Dales. The farm has a vision – to regenerate a landscape full of life, with flourishing streams and wetlands. Fundamental to this is restoring biodiversity as well as carbon capture and storage within on site peatlands, scrub and woodland habitats.

The project is at the start of its journey to bring a greater diversity of life back to the landscape. A small herd of cattle have been introduced to create a mosaic of habitats including native shrubs and trees. It supports around 1100 acres of peatland including blanket bog and wet heathland, with heather, bilberry and shrubs. Woodland is also supported on site, with tree planting planned for the coming years. Brown trout and other fish are present within the streams on site.

The project area has a varied geology and as part of Kingsdale supports a nationally important cave system. Its vision is to see a mosaic of habitats where nature thrives and where people can enjoy the landscape and its wildlife.

NATURE BASED ENTERPRISE

The project has a holiday cottage that is let out to encourage visitors to enjoy its mosaic of habitats. The low numbers of herbivores on site will support high quality meat production in the future.

KICK-STARTING REWILDING

Sheep grazing was removed from the site in 2020 and low numbers of native cattle and Tamworth pigs were introduced. The aim of these grazers is to replicate natural grazing and to encourage a mosaic of habitats across the site. Natural regeneration was encouraged through reduced grazing pressure, and supplementary native scrub and tree planting undertaken to restore a seed source for the area.

Habitat restoration will be needed to restore natural processes on site. Peat bog restoration is also planned and will be achieved through reprofiling, grip blocking and plug planting on areas of bare peat. Through the introduction of more natural grazing pressure, healthy peatlands and riparian scrub it is hoped that this will improve the health of the rivers on site.

Images: Kingsdale Head

Gallery

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Dor beetle
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Dipper
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Find out more

Future Plans

  1. 1 Monitoring the impact of wildlife recovery on the volume of water in the streams and the heath of the river habitat. This includes bird surveys, invertebrates, vegetation, fish populations, peat condition, and soils.
  2. 2 Continue to work with the Woodland Trust, Wild Ingleborough Initiative, Yorkshire Peat Partnership, the Great North Bog Initiative, the Lune Rivers Trust and RSPB.

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