SoNaRR2020: Coastal margins
This chapter assesses the progress towards the...
This chapter assesses the progress towards the sustainable management of natural resources in the mountains, moorland and heath ecosystems
Mountains, moorlands and heaths (MMH) contain most of the iconic habitats of the Welsh uplands, including:
This ecosystem also includes:
This ecosystem provides key benefits including carbon storage, flood mitigation, food, fibre and some of Wales's most iconic species and landscapes.
The majority of MMH ecosystems occur in the uplands, the land lying above the upper limit of enclosure. This upland part of the ecosystem accounts for 19.3% of the Welsh land making it the largest continuous block of habitat. It includes large areas of acid grassland much of it resulting from overgrazing of heath and bog.
In contrast, the lowland peatlands and heathlands are frequently small, highly fragmented and impacted by neighbouring land uses. Decline in traditional grazing and other management practices are often apparent and lead to loss of valued features.
Problems are compounded in both upland and lowland MMH by aerial and groundwater pollution with high levels of reactive nitrogen.
The chapter outlines the pressures which have caused the poor condition of much of this ecosystem and the need for change to address future challenges. It suggests actions to address the sustainability and resilience of the MMH ecosystem.
The Mountains, moorlands and heaths chapter's evidence needs are included in the overall evidence needs table.