‘Special’ status for nightingales’ stronghold
Thursday 21st November 2013
Nightingale © Bill Baston
Kent Wildlife Trust welcomes Natural England’s confirmation of Lodge Hill on the Hoo Peninsula as a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) and with it the recognition of the importance of the site.
The decision, made at a meeting on Tuesday following a period of public consultation, confirms the site’s national importance for nightingales, ancient woodland and species-rich grassland. It is the first site in Britain to be notified for nightingales, and holds over 1% of the national population of this iconic and declining species.
Lodge Hill is also home to many other bird species, badgers, several bat species and their roosts, four species of reptile, rare plants and many other animals that have yet to be fully investigated. The 351 hectare site had been proposed for a new development of 5,000 houses.
John Bennett, Chief Executive of Kent Wildlife Trust, said: “This is great news for the country’s wildlife and the people of Medway. We will continue to work with the Council to identify sustainable alternatives for their housing needs.”