Hook with Warsash Local Nature Reserve

Varied coastal habitats of shingle, grassland, wetland and woodland at the mouth of the River Hamble

 hook with warsash

About the site

Hook-with-Warsash is over 500 acres and divided into two sections by the village of Warsash. It is one of the most diverse sites in the region.

To the north is the east bank of the River Hamble and to the south is a shingle shore and intertidal flats that run along the edge of Southampton Water. Inland there are grazing pastures interspersed with tree lines, woodland and wetland habitats. Some of these habitats are rare and declining in the region. The foreshore and intertidal areas provide a winter feeding ground for many species of wading birds and wildfowl. The chance of seeing these birds is best from about 2½ hours before high tide.

Hook Spit is used by roosting turnstones as well as by a few pairs of breeding ringed plovers. These shingle zones are most interesting for their plant species such as sea kale, sea beet and yellow-horned poppy. The areas of grassland and scrub on Hook Links support a variety of breeding birds including linnets, meadow pipits and skylarks.

At Hook Lake are all stages of natural succession from open water to mature woodland. The reedbeds support pairs of breeding reed warblers and reed buntings and some cetti's warblers. As reedbed gives way to alder carr and then to mature oak and beech so almost all the typical woodland birds are found.

Contact us

South Area Office, Ranger Depot, Pylands Lane, Southampton SO31 1BH

Phone 023 8040 2534