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Lower Minnetts Field

This small reserve consists of a hay meadow, with a scrubby fringe linking the grassland to the surrounding woodland. The traditionally managed hay meadow is awash with colour in the summer when masses of oxeye daisies are in flower.

Species

In spring, cowslips appear across the site. In summer, oxeye daisies present a beautiful display along with species such as bird’s-foot-trefoil, common knapweed and common spotted-orchids. Indicators of calcareous grassland such as agrimony and lady’s bedstraw are also present. More unusual plants include common broomrape and adder’s-tongue fern, with common gromwell along the field margins. 

Common broomrape is a parasitic plant which feeds off the roots of host plants such as clovers. It favours a wide range of grassy habitats where suitable host plants flourish.

The diversity of wildflowers attracts insects such as meadow brown and small tortoiseshell butterflies and the distinctive red and black six-spot burnet moth. The woodland and scrub at the edge of the reserve provides an ideal habitat for birds including green woodpecker, spotted flycatcher and hawfinch. A reptile hibernaculum has been constructed to provide a place where species such as adder can safely over-winter. 

The mature roadside hedgerow at Lower Minnetts Field has been recently laid using traditional methods. Hedge-laying was once a commonplace countryside skill, with styles distinct to different counties. Hedges were used as stock proof barriers before the advent of fencing wire but this form of boundary management has largely disappeared from the countryside, along with some of the associated wildlife. The Trust however continues to practice traditional hedge-laying on many of its reserves. 

Access

The hay meadow is flat, but uneven in places. There is a kissing gate at the road side entrance and a further gate allowing access from the meadow into Slade Woods.

Directions

From the B4245 in Rogiet, turn into Minnetts Lane, opposite the Severn Tunnel Junction road. Pass under the motorway left along Minnetts Lane, going past Windmill Lane. The reserve entrance is 1km on the left, just before the Slade Woods car park. Access to the reserve is off Minnetts Lane. Car parking is available on the roadside or at the Slade Woods car park (grid ref: ST 449 888).

Nearby reserves
Brockwells Meadows and Rogiet Poorland are located close to Lower Minnetts Field. Magor Marsh is a short journey from this reserve.

What to see around the reserve
The neighbouring Slade Woods contains a network of footpaths, and a very good diversity of woodland wildlife. Historical interest in the wider area is provided by Roman remains at Caerwent, and Caldicot Castle and Country Park.

Nearby nature reserves

Rogiet Poorland
0 miles - Gwent Wildlife Trust
Brockwells Meadows SSSI
1 miles - Gwent Wildlife Trust
Magor Marsh SSSI
2 miles - Gwent Wildlife Trust

Nature reserve map

Reserve information

Location
Minnetts Lane, Rogiet
Caldicot
Gwent
Map reference
ST 449 888
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Opening Times
Open at all times
Size
0.87 hectares
Living Landscape schemes
Gwent Levels Living Landscape
Access
No

Walking information
The hay meadow is flat, but uneven in places. There is a kissing gate at the road side entrance and a further gate allowing access from the meadow into Slade Woods.
Parking
Car parking is available on the roadside verge at the entrance or in the nearby Forestry Commission Slade Woods car park.
Dogs
Dogs must be on lead
Grazing animals
Livestock
Reserve manager
Gwent Wildlife Trust
Tel: 01600 740 358
info@gwentwildlife.org