At our Boulby Mine site located in East Cleveland, we have a number of habitats for a diverse range of plant and animal species. Many of the habitats of our neighbouring wildlife lie adjacent to our mine, including woodlands, flower-rich grassland and a stream of life associated with Easington Beck.
ICL UK has worked closely with the Industry Nature Conservation Association (INCA) to preserve, protect and increase the biodiversity of wildlife on our site. Through INCA surveys and research, we have identified a number of species which includes bats, birds, insects and deer.
ICL UK not only strives to minimise the impact of its commercial operations on the natural environment, but actively manages and improves habitats to maintain and increase the biodiversity in areas on and around the site. This has has given rise to a wide range of plant and animal species.
East Cleveland has an extensive network of woodlands in the deep valleys of Skelton Beck, Saltburn Gill, Kilton Beck and Easington Beck. Some of the woods in the valley of Easington Beck are owned by ICL UK. All of the valley woodlands provide habitats and create corridors for a great variety of wildlife. Many of these, including those at Boulby, can be classified as Ancient Semi-natural Woodland and are of regional and possibly national importance.
A frequent visitor – the Roe Deer
Wildflowers and Rich Grassland
To the east of our mine, the woodlands open up into a wide area of short grassland, an ideal habitat for a diverse range of wild flowers. What’s more, come Spring time, the grassland adjacent to the mine is blanketed with a display of cowslips. This is significant as cowslips have started to decline, with many old grasslands succumbing to intensive management. Other wildflowers which are common to the area include Seal-heal, Lady’s Bedstraw and Bird’s-foot Trefoil.
The grasslands also support populations of insects, like moths, butterflies and bees. Common species, such as the Peacock Butterfly and Small Tortoiseshell sip nectar from the flowers, from the beginning of Spring until the end of Summer.
Cowslips, now rare in the UK
The northern edge of the meadowland is a haven for natural plants, with species being spotted such as; gorse, broom, hawthorn, elder, bramble and small oaks. Due to the abundance of wild vegetation, many insects have made this area a permanent habitat. Bramble blossom is particularly attractive for butterflies, like the Small Tortoiseshell and Comma making regular appearences, together with numerous hoverflies and beetles.
Steam and Stream-side Habitats
Easington Beck flows through a steep sided gill that crosses ICL UK’s property and is home to a diverse community of aquatic insects and other invertebrates, such as mayflies and stoneflies. In addition to this, the area by the stream is home to much of the same vegetation across the entire site and includes trees such as Sycamore, Oak, Ash and ground flora including Ramsons, Dog’s Mercury, and Wood Anemone.
Would you like to know more? Please get in touch via our Contact Us page to request the ‘Wild About Boulby’ booklet.