Close-up ox-eye daisy

Ox-eye Daisy - Cath Shellswell

Prospects Fields comprises of three calcareous fields just north of Langport off the A372.

Location

Prospect Fields,
Adjacent to A372,
Coombe
Langport
Somerset

OS Map Reference

ST 419 283
A static map of Prospect Fields

Know before you go

Size
3 hectares

Parking information

No formal car park. Access is via a gate at ST 419 282 where a minor road joins the A372.

Grazing animals

Cattle and sheep.

Access

Stile. Grass fields. Steep slopes. Uneven ground.

Dogs

Under effective control
Visit the 'Dog walking on reserves' page in the Contact section for more information.

When to visit

Opening times

Open at all times

Best time to visit

April to July

About the reserve

The reserve comprises three fields, two of them towards the west, have a species-rich calcareous grassland flora that contains many characteristic species including Carline Thistle, Pyramidal Orchid, Bee Orchid, Pepper Saxifrage, Hoary Plantain, Yellow-Wort, Common Centuary, Small-flowered Buttercup, Wild Thyme and Quaking Grass. These fields also contain several plant species that have a very restricted distribution in Somerset such as Common Hound’s-Tongue and Dodder. Corn Parsley, a species that is declining not only nationally but also in Europe, is also present along with the nationally scarce Slender Tare.

The field that lies to the east and closest to the entrance is not so species rich being dominated by grasses especially Timothy Grass, Smooth Meadow-grass and Meadow Fescue. Herbs present include White Clover, Agrimony, Black Medick, Bird’s-foot Trefoil, Wild Carrot and Wall Speedwell. Ox-eye Daisy is locally abundant. The fields are surrounded by a very wide hedgerows with abundant Elm, Hawthorn, Blackthorn and Elder. Broad bands of fragmented scrub, which are derived from former hedgerows, divide the fields, while other small scattered patches of scrub also occur across the reserve.

The dense hedgerows provide great nesting places for Blackcaps, Long Tailed Tits and many other small birds. Green Woodpeckers are seen regularly in the fields probing into ant hills to feed on ants and their larvae. Buzzards and Kestrels are seen overhead throughout the year. Badgers are resident and there is a large Rabbit population.

A good range of butterflies can be found here including the Brown Hairstreak whose caterpillars feed on the Blackthorn in the hedges and also Small Copper, Holly Blue, Brown Argus, Common Blue, Ringlet, Hedge Brown, Small Heath, Marble White and Small Skipper. The Dingy Skipper and Wall butterfly have also been recorded here. The Great Green Bush-Cricket can also be seen here.

Reserve conservation management – Livestock grazing. Rotational cutting of scrub to stop it encroaching on the grassland.

Contact us

Somerset Wildlife Trust
Contact number: 01823 652400

Environmental designation

Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI)

Prospect Fields documents