Minsmere site one of the best in country

A POPULAR Suffolk beauty spot has officially been named as one of the best in the country - with more than 5,000 types of wildlife recorded there in the last year.

A POPULAR Suffolk beauty spot has officially been named as one of the best in the country - with more than 5,000 types of wildlife recorded there in the last year.

According to an annual survey released yesterday by the RSPB, Minsmere has the largest number of flora and fauna of any of their 200 nature reserves across the UK.

The popular beauty spot is well known as a Mecca for birdwatchers but a massive 5,348 types of wildlife were found there, including 1,500 kinds of fungi, such as the endangered bearded tooth fungus.

Last night Ian Barthorpe, spokesman for RSPB Minsmere, said they were 'delighted' to have been rated so highly.


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'Minsmere is such a fantastic site - wherever you are you can always expect to see something of interest,' he said. 'It is well known for being a great place for bird watching and anyone who has been here in recent weeks will also be aware of how brilliant it is for watching Red Deer.

'However, it is a superb place for watching wildlife of all sorts, from species that are perhaps more common to those that are more elusive and specific.'

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Mr Barthorpe said the variety of wildlife at the nature reserve could be attributed to a combination of its size, location, number of habitats and longevity.

'One of the reasons why we have such a big list is because we are a large site with a wide variety of habitats - that size and variety along with the location along the coast on the migration flyway helps attract a lot of wildlife,' he said.

'Minsmere has also been a RSPB nature reserve for more than 10 years and has been well managed and established to create an optimum habitat for a wide variety of species.'

Of 13,400 species recorded in the annual survey of 200 reserves across the UK, only 3pc were birds while more than half were insects, almost a quarter were fungi and 12pc were plants.

The 140,000 hectares of land the RSPB has in its reserves - which covers just 0.6pc of the total area of Britain - are home to 68pc of the country's native plant species, 78pc of its spiders and all our resident reptiles and dragonflies.

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