Operator: Sibelco UK Ltd
Location: North Lincolnshire
The key to Messingham Sand Quarry’s impressive list of species is the variety of habitats within the 50 hectare site.
The series of lagoons created by the extraction of sand have produced a wetland habitat now fringed by fen, reedbeds, willow and birch scrub, but also complimented by retained areas of heathland, meadow, deciduous and pine woodland.
To date over 190 bird species of international and national conservation concern have been recorded, of which 33 are Red Listed species and 75 Amber Listed. 30 species are UK Biodiversity Action plan (BAP) target species. Over 70 species have bred at Messingham Sand Quarry, including nationally declining species such as cuckoo, lapwing, spotted flycatcher, turtle dove and willow tit.
There are plans for further restoration of extraction areas to create lakes with adjoining ditch networks and reintroduce woodland and hedgerow networks, with grassland areas and land for arable farming. This will result in additional spaces for species in the current nature reserve to move into.
Priority BAP species to be found at this site include the bittern, marsh warbler, reed bunting, song thrush, small heath butterfly, Norfolk hawker dragonfly and otter.