Hollymount Forest

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Hollymount Forest: The dense carr of alder and willow trees is probably the oldest remaining and certainly one of the finest examples of this wetland habitat in Ulster. The trees are encrusted in a rich layer of lichen growth, while sedges, yellow flag iris and other wetland plants dominate the ground below. Tall, ancient mounds of the tussock sedge stand up to 1.5m high, sometimes forming the rooting base for trees such as ash and birch. Fen and reed swamp habitats cover the remaining areas. Wet woodland or carr has developed undisturbed on the site since 1745 when a tidal barrage across the Quoile estuary excluded the sea from the Downpatrick marshes.

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