This is vegetation composed of ling Calluna vulgaris, cross-leaved heath Erica tetralix, bog
myrtle Myrica gale, hare’s-tail cottongrass Eriophorum vaginatum, common cottongrass E.
angustifolium, deergrass Scirpus cespitosus, purple moor-grass Molinia caerulea and bog
mosses Sphagnum spp., on level to gently sloping surfaces of wet peat which is more than
50 cm deep. True bog vegetation includes good quantities of one or more of the bog
indicators Eriophorum vaginatum, Sphagnum papillosum and S. magellanicum. This broad
habitat also includes examples of wet heath vegetation and Molinia-dominated mire which
are on peat more than 50 cm deep.
This broad habitat includes raised bogs, which are gently-raised domes of deep peat,
occurring mainly in the lowlands of southern and eastern Scotland; and blanket bogs, which
are extensive coverings of deep peat on level or gently undulating ground, occurring mainly
in upland areas, but descending to sea level in the west Highlands and Hebrides. Each can
have similar vegetation which can include any of the following:
very wet bog vegetation with extensive carpets of S. papillosum and S. magellanicum
dotted with small plants such as sundews Drosera spp. And bog asphodel
Narthecium ossifragum
drier bog vegetation co-dominated by Calluna and E. vaginatum with much
Sphagnum capillifolium and little or no S. papillosum or S. magellanicum
small bog pools and very wet Sphagnum-filled depressions
overgrazed bog vegetation dominated by E. vaginatum, with little or no dwarf shrub
wet heath vegetation with little or no E. vaginatum, S. papillosum or S. magellanicum
Molinia-dominated mire
Sphagnum magellanicum, cranberry Vaccinium oxycoccos and bog rosemary Andromeda
polifolia are more common on raised bogs than on blanket bogs.
Bogs are of conservation interest, especially for their plants, birds and insects. Our bogs are
also of international importance because similar habitats are rare on a global scale: Britain
and Ireland have 13% of the blanket bog in the world in 0.23% of the world’s area of land.
Ideal management for conservation of this broad habitat includes light or moderate grazing
and an absence of peat-cutting, draining, burning and afforestation.
Most of this Broad Habitat is associated with two UK BAP priority habitats: Blanket bog,
which includes the extensive level or undulating bogs in unenclosed upland areas, and
Lowland raised bog on areas of raised, domed peat within enclosed agricultural lowlands.
Raised bogs in upland areas and upland fringes have been termed Intermediate bog.
Examples of Intermediate bog situated among blanket bogs can be assigned to the Blanket
bog priority habitat, and the remainder are included with Lowland raised bog.
The priority habitats included within this broad habitat type are:
Blanket bog
Lowland raised bog