Since the beginning of the 20th century the UK has lost around 97% of its meadows. This has been due to a number of factors including modern, intensive farming practices, urban expansion and development.
Meadows are not just part of our natural heritage, they provide benefits for local wildlife and help tackle climate change. They can store more carbon in the roots and soil than close-mown grass. Species-rich grasslands are huge carbon stores and lock in carbon and boost biodiversity.
Meadows provide habitat for a range of wildlife, including:
- pollinators such as butterflies, bees and other insects;
- smaller birds that feed on insects or seed heads;
- small mammals such as voles;
- larger birds such as owls that feed on the small mammals