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The Secret World Of Peat Bogs - A Quick Guide

By :Fertile Fibre 0 comments
The Secret World Of Peat Bogs - A Quick Guide
We are passionate about preserving the peat bogs of the UK. If you're lucky enough to be visiting or walking across a bog, here's what to look out for:

Peat bog flowers and plants


Sundews can be found on every continent except Antarctica. These carnivorous plants attract, capture and then absorb insects through glands spread over the surface of their leaves.

Cotton grass

These fluffy fruiting heads appear in May and June. It was once used to stuff pillows but the strands aren't long enough to spin or weave into cloth.

Sphagnum mosses

The rotted remains of these mosses are what make up the majority of peat. Sphagnum mosses hold 10 - 20 times their weight in water. This is why they're so great at helping guard against flooding further downstream:

Peat bogs animals and birds

Golden plovers

These birds have gold and black plumage in summer. You can spot them in the South Uplands and Highlands of Scotland, the Western and Northern Isles, the Peak District, North Yorkshire, Wales and Devon. In winter they move to lowland fields. Find out more on the British Trust for Ornithology's web page about the plover.


The dunlin breeds and nests in the uplands of the UK. It is in fact a small sandpiper. In summer, a dunlin's plumage is brick-red above, with a black belly patch. In winter, it is grey above and white underneath. Find out more on the Wildlife Trusts' page on Dunlins.


The greenshank is a medium-sized wader bird. It has a slightly up-turned bill and long green legs. Find out more in the Greenshank Migration Story.

Large heath butterfly

This beautiful butterfly sometimes has eyespots on their underwings. Adults always sit with their wings closed. The appearance and size of these spots depends on where it is seen. Here's a video from a conservation project at Heysham Moss to help build up the species:

How you can help preserve peat bogs

The peat compost that many UK gardeners use is sadly destroying our peat bogs. Find out more in Just How Bad is Peat Compost for The Environment? If you'd like to 'do your bit', you can buy sustainable, peat-free compost online. We offer free next day delivery to the majority of places on the UK mainland. We can also deliver to Europe. If you've any questions, give us a call on 01432 853111 or email us at

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