Purple Moor-grass and Rush Pasture

peak district landscape

Purple Moor-grass and Rush-pasture

Purple Moor-grass and Rush-pasture (pdf full description) 

Approximate extent – 100 ha, plus 830 ha rush-pasture for birds

Distribution – Small areas in the South West Peak and Dark Peak

Opportunities and Threats

Extent -  Very limited areas of species-rich habitat.  Some of this will be inherent, but there have also been historic losses through drainage for agriculture.

Condition – Probably generally good where sites survive.  The remaining areas of botanically-poor rush pasture have considerable conservation benefit to breeding waders.

Connectivity -  Moderate, with any sites occurring as part of a mosaic of semi-natural grasslands.

Climate change risks – The main risks are probably of drying-out associated with reduced summer rainfall and higher temperatures, and vulnerability of associated ground-nesting birds to climate change.


The limited area of this habitat means it is:

High priority to:

  • Safeguard unprotected sites.

The value of botanically-poor rush-pasture for declining breeding waders means it is:

High priority to:

  • Identify ‘hotspots’ of rush-pasture with wader interest, and instigate appropriate management.

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