TYPE OF HABITAT
A small area of wet heathland covering 1.0ha.
OS Sheet 204 Grid Ref: SW 795 538
Carn Moor Nature Reserve is a very small area situated 0.5 mile north east of Goonhavern. Access is via a private path off 'World in Miniature'. Follow the track down and over a stile, then bear left across a field and follow the footpath to the heath. There are no paths across the reserve; visiting is therefore difficult.
This reserve is owned by the Trust and consists of a small rectangular field next to the former railway line to Perranporth. The area is very uniform. The vegetation is mostly of wet heathland with marginal scrub. Adjacent land to the west is similar but is grazed and consequently shorter.
SPECIES OF PARTICULAR INTEREST
The reserve is dominated by black bog rush and purple moor grass which both form large tussocks up to 0.75 of a meter in height in places. The fragrant shrubby bog myrtle is widespread; this was formerly used as a fly repellant before the invention of sticky paper! Britain's largest fern, the royal fern, occurs occasionally. The cross leaved heath is widespread in the moist damp soils and the spikes of bog asphodel are identifiable at almost any time of the year. Its yellow star-like flowers appear in July but its warm orange fruit lasts until September. Bog cotton grass occurs locally as does the marsh violet. At the eastern end of the site drier forms of heath occur including western gorse, bell heather and ling. The south western grass, bristle-leaved bent, which gives heathland its characteristic golden colour in autumn occurs here but is very noticeable along the boundary wall. The shrubby hedges consist of grey willow, hawthorn and the occasional blackthorn together with gorse and brambles. The area is crisscrossed with fox runs. Many birds use the hedges and pheasants can be seen. Snipe and curlews use the site in winter, and a barn owl regularly hunts here.
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