Conservation work


Bellever Research

The DPHT is working with academics and students at the University of Plymouth, undertaking a pony grazing research project at Bellever. The project aims to assess the benefits of ponies as conservation grazers in controlling Molinia within heathland habitats, using salt licks as a means of focusing their grazing.

Salt licks are hung on posts (along with ‘control posts’ with no licks). Results so far are promising, with ponies attracted to the salt licks (and associated posts) and clearly making more use of the less palatable Lakehead Hill section of the site than previously, promoting shorter swards, species diversity and creating conditions suitable for heather regeneration.

The intention is to continue with the research project over the next 2/3 years to see if further improvement in habitat can be gained through targeted pony grazing, with the continued involvement of the University of Plymouth. For more information see the DPHT’s article in British Wildlife Volume 31, 3, February 2020 and Conservation Land Management Autumn 2020 Vol 18 No 3.

Volunteers are needed for our regular Bellever conservation work parties.

Our wonderful team of conservation volunteers on Bellever carrying out a range of work to protect our moorland site, encouraging biodiversity and managing our treasured archaeology.

The team also maintain the stone wall boundary and non-native species of trees that spread onto the moorland so there is always plenty to do. If you would like to find out more about volunteering with us at Bellever, please email  or telephone 01626 833234 to have a chat and find out more. We look forward to seeing you soon!

Bellever Management

Bellever and Lakehead are recognised as having both high biodiversity value and significant archaeological interest, while also offering valuable educational access.