The Lizard CWS lies south-east of Wymondham and forms an interesting mosaic of habitats which includes marshy grassland, fen, acid grassland, a disused railway embankment, broad-leaved woodland and gravel scrub stretching out at the south-east corner. The River Tiffey runs east to west through the northern half of the site, and the whole area is permeated with ditches, and areas of standing water. This patchwork of habitats makes The Lizard a fantastic place to discover a broad range of wildlife, particularly plants and invertebrates.
You will notice that the meadows south of the river increase in their floristic diversity the wetter they become, and down here you can spot tufted vetch, meadow vetchling, lesser stitchwort, fleabane, angelica, common knapweed, common spotted orchid, water-mint, bird’s-foot trefoil, selfheal, yarrow, germander speedwell, marsh marigold, cuckoo flower, lesser celandine and ox-eye daisy. Further still, within the damp fen areas, a range of sedges and rushes appear, along with lesser spearwort, fen bedstraw, marsh bedstraw and beautiful early marsh orchids.
Further east, the grassland shifts to an acidic influence in places and this promotes a new suite of species, including sweet vernal grass, lady’s bedstraw, beaked hawk’s-beard, yellow rattle, hemp agrimony, common toadflax and in summer, spectacular swathes of harebell.
North of the River Tiffey, a boardwalk skirts the water meadow at the base of a disused railway embankment, with small woodland glades. Head along the track during March-May to try and spot the small but exquisite moschatel, or ‘Town Hall Clock’. The neighbouring marshy grassland is also floristically diverse, with red bartsia, bistort, meadowsweet, ragged robin, branched bur-reed and in late spring, more early marsh orchids.
The gravelly and sandy southeast of the site (known as Wade’s Pit), includes an ancient sunken trail at its western boundary and a large water-filled gravel pit which is great habitat for dragonflies and damselflies.
Best time to visit
In order to see the greatest diversity of flora and invertebrates, the best time to visit The Lizard is Spring-Summer.
This County Wildlife Site is under multiple ownership, including The Lizard Charity.
Can people get involved in managing the site?
Yes – please contact Wymondham Nature Group
who help manage the site
Currently under development