Limestone Pavement Ecology
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Limestone Pavement Ecology



A presentation detailing the ecology of limestone pavement, prominent flora and fauna, pressures on the habitat and management techniques,

A presentation detailing the ecology of limestone pavement, prominent flora and fauna, pressures on the habitat and management techniques,



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  • 2600ha of limestone pavement in the UKYorkshire Dales – Malham CoveLake District – A ring around lake district and north LancashireSmall areas of pavement can be found in the extreme north-west and across the central region of Scotland. Pavement can also be found in Wales in two arcs, one to the north of Wales and one across the central southern area across the Brecon Beacons.Elsewhere in Europe, limestone pavement is found only in The Burren in Western Ireland, in the high Alps and in parts of former Yugoslavia. On a global scale, limestone pavement is rare. 

Limestone Pavement Ecology Limestone Pavement Ecology Presentation Transcript

  • Limestone Pavement “an area of limestone which lies wholly or partly exposed on the surface of the ground and has been fissured by natural erosion” (Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, Section 34 (6))
  • Where? o Around than 3000 hectares left in the UK o Yorkshire Dales o Lake District o Elsewhere in Europe o The Burren in Ireland o High Alps o Parts of former Yugoslavia o Carboniferous Limestone o Very Rare JNCC , 2007
  • How? o Limestone exposed in the last Ice Age o Water action eroded the rock into paving blocks – „clints‟ o Complex pattern of crevices – „grikes‟ o Typically horizontal, or gently inclined
  • Who? o Snails and Slugs o Woodlice o True bugs o Flies o Craneflies o Ants, bees and wasps o Birds
  • What? o Vegetation that uses the structure of the rocks as a shelter from the extreme climate and/or grazing. o Vegetation consisting of species that are poor competitors but can withstand little or no soil, low nutrients, poor shelter and drought.
  • Pressures o Stone Removal for Commercial Purposes o Intensive Grazing o Inappropriate Land Management o Agricultural Operations o Forestry Operations o Invasive Species
  • Management o Prevention of stone removal or disturbance o Limestone Pavement Orders (LPOs)
  • Management o Open Pavement o Wooded Pavement o Scrubby Pavement Open Pavement Scrubby Pavement Wooded Pavement
  • Management o Managing Open Limestone Pavement o Reduce grazing/Total stock exclusion o Managing Scrubby Limestone Pavement o Removing invasive species o Coppice management o Stock introduction o Managing Wooded Limestone Pavement o Heavy thinning/Selective felling o Removal of beech and conifers
  • References 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. Backshall, J., Manley, J. and Rebane, M. (2001) The Upland Management Handbook. UK: English Nature. BBC (2013) Limestone Pavements. Available at: (Accessed: 4 October 2013). Conway, J. and Onslow, E. (1999) The Impact of Grazing Management on Limestone Pavements in Wales . Wales: Countryside Council for Wales. Cumbria Wildlife Trust (2001) Cumbria Biodiversity Action Plan. Available at: (Accessed: 4 October 2013). High Trenhouse (2010) Limestone Pavement. Available at: (Accessed: 4 October 2013). Joint Nature Conservation Committee (1995) Biodiversity: The UK Steering Group Report Volume 2 : Action Plans (Annex F and Annex G). Available at: (Accessed: 4 October 2013). Joint Nature Conservation Committee (2007) Second Report by the United Kingdom under Article 17 on the Implementation of the Directive from January 2001 to December 2006. Peterborough: JNCC Joint Nature Conservation Committee (2011) UK Biodiversity Action Plan Priority Habitat Descriptions. Available at: (Accessed: 4 October 2013). Lancashire Environment Record Network (2013) Limestone Pavement Orders. Available at: (Accessed: 9 October 2013). (no date) (Accessed: 4 October). The Wildlife Trusts (2013) Limestone Pavements. Available at: (Accessed: 4 October 2013). Nature in the Dales (2011) The Second Biodiversity Action Plan for the Yorkshire Dales National Park. Available at: (Accessed: 5 October 2013) SEPM STRATRA (2013) Sheshymore Limestone Gallery. Available at: (Accessed: 25 Ocober 2013).