This is just one of over 200 reserves and wildlife hot-spots featured on the Nature of Dorset. Find out where this site is, what it is like and what you can see there below.
A large expanse of heathland, both wet and dry, on the western edge of Poole which is now part of the Great Heath project
When you visit Upton Heath you can see why the westward expansion of Poole suddenly came to a halt! Upton Heath is wild, wet and very unsuitable for building on and so, mercifully, it was saved from destruction. The proximity of housing, however, has taken its toll with many dogs being walked, many not under control and there is a degree of dog mess to avoid. It is also something of an adventure playground which leads to various problems including litter, muddy paths from bicycles and, of course, the perenial danger from heath fires that are started both accidentally and intentionally. This reserve is the site of the urban heaths project which teaches local people (especially children) about the heath, its importance and its care.
Please do not let any of this put you off a visit. It is a large site, bigger than I imagined, and is well cared for by the wardens. It provides an array of habitat with a very wet heathland bog in the centre with higher, dry heath around it. There are areas of woodland and scrub, a stream and a redundant railway line, something for everyone! As always, a diverstity of habitat leads to a diversity of species.
My list of species is a bit limited as I really have not done Upton Heath justice, something I must try and put right.
This map shows the location of the reserve (purple marker) and access points to the reserve (yellow markers). You can use the Google map controls to zoom in get a more detailed idea of where it is and where to park. If you click on a marker more information about directions, sat nav co-ordinates and parking will display.