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More about Coombe Valley

Coombe Valley view

Wildlife

The tall grasses and wildflowers of the meadows support butterflies, colourful day-flying moths and giant bush crickets. The pond and stream provide a home for dragonflies and grey wagtails and the bushy hedgerows provide cover for hosts of nesting songbirds including the rare cirl bunting.

Historical Interest

Historically, Coombe Valley Local Nature Reserve was farmed and much of its original character, with small fields flanked by traditional hedgerows on Devon banks, has survived to this day. The original farmhouses are now private residences but, having been sympathetically thatched by their new owners, provide extra charm when viewed from across the valley. The brass noseband from an inter-war heavy horse harness was dug up a few years ago near the play area

Recreation

Coombe Valley Local Nature Reserve is an informal countryside site with a network of paths, many sloping, some surfaced, some mown. It is a popular place for a stroll to walk the dog. There are seats to pause and catch your breath or enjoy the view but otherwise formal provision is limited.

Management

Coombe Valley Local Nature Reserve is managed by the Council's Ranger Service for the benefit of people and wildlife. The wildlife habitat management includes:

* managing the grassland as hay meadows to let wildflowers set seed and to provide a habitat for butterflies, moths, bush crickets and other invertebrates;
* a programme of hedge laying to maintain long term health and vigour and to provide thick nesting cover;
* scrub management to provide diversity and sheltered glades;
* provision of winter corn stubble for cirl buntings which breed on the site. Two very small patches of spring barley are grown each year.