Grid References: O.S. Explorer map 213 Aberystwyth & Cwm Rheidol.Main entrance: SN612786, Site centre: SN614788
Status: The iron age hillfort is a Scheduled Ancient Monument.
Tenure: The freehold was purchased in 1973 with grant aid from WWF.
Size: 8.3 ha (20.5 acre).
Location and Access Notes
Public transport: The Aberystwyth circular town service stops in Penparcau, from where the reserve is just over a 2 km walk.
5 km south east of Aberystwyth. Access from the minor road signposted Nanteos from the B4340 to Trawsgoed. Park in the dedicated layby near the entrance gate, just west of Nanteos Lodge. Inaccessible to wheelchairs. A circular footpath leads round the reserve and is steep in places.
Description: Mixed woodland and stream on slopes of Old Warren Hill Iron Age hillfort.
The reserve comprises varied woodland covering the top and steep western slopes of Old Warren Hill. A stream running through the wooded dingle forms the western boundary. There is a large Badger sett in the ramparts of the hillfort.
The canopy is made up of a diverse mixture of species including Sessile Oak, Beech, Ash, Sycamore, English Elm, Wych Elm, Silver Birch, Sweet Chestnut, Scots Pine and Norway Spruce. The ground flora includes a spectacular display of Bluebells (4-6) in the early summer.
The diversity of tree species and the physical structure of the woodland provide an ideal habitat for a variety of birds including Blackcap, Garden Warbler, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Pied Flycatcher, Redstart, and Willow Warbler. Birds of prey are frequently seen soaring over the hill side, Buzzard and Sparrowhawk are the most frequent with occasional visits by Kestrel and Red Kite. Large numbers of Ravens also congregate over the reserve in the early autumn.
The wood is particularly rich in epiphytic lichens and fungi, the latter probably benefiting from the large number of decaying wind-blown trees.
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