Portsmouth is one of the most densely populated cities in the country. It also boasts several significant sites in and around the city boundary offering a wide variety of plant, animal and conservation interest to both residents and visitors.
All these sites are, or have part of their area, designated a Site of Importance for Nature Conservation to increase awareness of their important habitats and ensure continued public contact with nature, despite the urban surroundings of Portsmouth.
Portsdown Hill and Hilsea Lines both offer opportunities for volunteers to get involved with conservation and restoration tasks.
Portsmouth City Council Parks Service are responsible for the following wildlife havens:
Located at the south-eastern point of Portsea Island, Eastney Beach is a large area of coastal turf and shingle vegetation and home to over 100 species of flora. Follow the link for more information on Eastney Beach.
Bordered by hedgerow, the area consists mainly of unimproved marshland east of Farlington playing fields. The lower wetland contains some rare species of marsh flora.
The open space surrounding the Fort is composed of many areas of different coastal habitats, each with its own wildlife and species composition. Follow the link for more information on Fort Cumberland.
This large open space has changed considerably over the years to cater for the increased needs of sports pitches, golf course, archery range, horse paddocks and allotments. There still remains a significant natural area that is of great wildlife interest. Follow the link for more information on Great Salterns.
Probably the most varied wildlife haven on Portsea Island, this area contains woodland, hedgerows, meadows fresh and brackish water areas, marshland and coastal habitat. Follow the link for more information about Hilsea Lines.
Milton Common and Tamworth Field
The Common is a large area of reclaimed land, and both sites are valued for nature conservation and of great amenity value to the local community. Follow the link for more information about Milton Common and Tamworth Field.
A wide variety of plants and animals, particularly butterflies, thrive on the chalk grassland and include some species not commonly found elsewhere in Britain. Grassland management is used to enhance the Site of Special Scientific Interest adjacent to Fort Widley. Follow the link for more information about Portsdown Hill.
Portsmouth City Council also offer a limited number of grants to Conservation Groups who are keen to protect and enhance the valuable natural features here in Portsmouth.
To find out more or for further information on the city's wildlife areas email firstname.lastname@example.org, phone 02392 834180 or write to the Parks Service at Portsmouth City Council Civic Offices, Guildhall Square, PO1 2AD.