Wildlife and nature

  • There are five types of deer in the New Forest: fallow, roe, red, sika and muntjac.
  • All three species of British newt are found in the New Forest: smooth, palmate and great-crested.
  • All three native species of snake are found in the New Forest: the adder (or viper – Britain’s only poisonous snake), the grass snake and the smooth snake.
  • Rare plants such as the blue marsh gentian and the bog orchid grow in the New Forest’s mires.
  • Around 700 species of wildflower are said to grow in the New Forest – nearly a third of the total found in Britain.
  • Around 2,700 species of fungi grow in the New Forest.
  • The New Forest is the only place in Britain where the wild gladiolus grows.
  • There are four types of heather in the New Forest: true/common heather or ling, bell heather, the cross-leaved heath, and (the rarest) Dorset heath.
  • The New Forest is home to the UK’s largest breeding population of the rare Dartford warbler.
  • The New Forest is the most important place in Britain for the rare Southern Damselfly with 30 colonies.
  • Thirteen of the 17 native species of British bat have been recorded in the New Forest.
  • The New Forest cicada was discovered in 1812. It was thought to be extinct in 1941 but it was rediscovered in 1962. It is the only cicada found in Britain.
  • Sand lizards were extinct in the New Forest in 1970, but they were successfully re-introduced in 1998.
  • Beehives are placed in parts of the New Forest in summer because the gorse and heather provide nectar for bees.

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