Denaby Ings are a nature reserve on the River Dearne, encompassing an area of 23 hectares north of Denaby Main, Doncaster, South Yorkshire, near the town of Mexborough. The Trans Pennine Trail passes here. The habitats include open water, water meadows, woodland scrub and hedgerows. Birdwatching is a popular activity there. The area has been classed as a Site of Special Scientific Interest since 11 August 1983.
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This is a list of Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSIs) in South Yorkshire, United Kingdom. As of 2009, There are 35 sites designated within this Area of Search, of which 18 have been designated due to their biological interest, 14 due to its geological interest, and 3 for both biological and geological interest. In England the body responsible for designating SSSIs is Natural England, which chooses a site because of its fauna, flora, geological or physiographical features. Natural England took over the role of designating and managing SSSIs from English Nature in October 2006 when it was formed from the amalgamation of English Nature, parts of the Countryside Agency and the Rural Development Service. Natural England, like its predecessor, uses the 1974–1996 county system and as such the same approach is followed here, rather than, for example, merging all Yorkshire sites into a single list. Natural England produces citation sheets for each SSSI and are the main source of information for this list.South Yorkshire's geography can be split into different types. The very west of South Yorkshire is part of Dark Peak which is part of the Peak District National Park and lies to the west of Sheffield. This extensive moorland is one of the largest semi-natural areas in England and has broad plateaus with rocky outcrops interspersed with valleys. Moving east the land elevation drops with a transition from the peak district to coal fields. Much of this area of transition has seen urban development with Sheffield being a good example.The central region, to the north of Sheffield is largely dependent on the presence of coal measures in the areas geology. This is reflected by ancient woodlands, valley wetlands and large arable fields where there is no urban development. To the east of the coal measures is a strip of Magnesian Limestone which runs north to south between Sheffield and Doncaster. This open landscape is characterised by ancient woodlands and limestone grasslands and often has historic limestone monuments. However the light and dry soils are ideal for cultivation which means little of the original habitat remains. In the very east of South Yorkshire the Humberhead Levels dominate, with the area being relatively flat and dominated by the areas river systems. The area is predominately covered with small fields or areas of peatland.RSPB Dearne Valley Old Moor
RSPB Dearne Valley Old Moor is an 89-hectare (220-acre) wetlands nature reserve in the Dearne Valley near Barnsley, South Yorkshire, run by the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB). It lies on the junction of the A633 and A6195 roads and is bordered by the Trans Pennine Trail long-distance path. Following the end of coal mining locally, the Dearne Valley had become a derelict post-industrial area, and the removal of soil to cover an adjacent polluted site enabled the creation of the wetlands at Old Moor.
Old Moor is managed to benefit bitterns, breeding waders such as lapwings, redshanks and avocets, and wintering golden plovers. A calling male little bittern was present in the summers of 2015 and 2016. Passerine birds include a small colony of tree sparrows and good numbers of willow tits, thriving here despite a steep decline elsewhere in the UK.
Barnsley Metropolitan Borough Council created the reserve, which opened in 1998, but the RSPB took over management of the site in 2003 and developed it further, with funding from several sources including the National Lottery Heritage Fund. The reserve, along with others nearby, forms part of a landscape-scale project to create wildlife habitat in the Dearne Valley. It is an 'Urban Gateway' site with facilities intended to attract visitors, particularly families. In 2018, the reserve had about 100,000 visits. The reserve may benefit in the future from new habitat creation beyond the reserve and improved accessibility, although there is also a potential threat to the reserve from climate change and flooding.River Dearne
The River Dearne is a river in South Yorkshire, England. It flows roughly east for more than 30 kilometres (19 mi), from its source just inside West Yorkshire, through Denby Dale, Clayton West, Darton, Barnsley, Darfield, Wath upon Dearne, Bolton on Dearne, Adwick upon Dearne and Mexborough to its confluence with the River Don at Denaby Main. Its main tributary is the River Dove, which joins it at Darfield. The river was one of those affected by the 2007 United Kingdom floods.
The course of the river is accessible to walkers, as the Dearne Way long distance footpath follows it from Dearne Head to its junction with the River Don. Places of interest along the Dearne include the Yorkshire Sculpture Park at Bretton Hall, and Monk Bretton Priory. The lower Dearne Valley, below Barnsley, is now also called Dearne Valley and is a regeneration area.
The river has been the subject of channel engineering, to ease the problem of flooding. A new channel was constructed for it near its mouth in the 1950s, as the old route had been affected by subsidence. Washlands, which can be progressively flooded as water levels rise, were constructed in the 1960s and 1970s. A flood relief channel and a regulator to restrict the flow was built at Bolton upon Dearne. During the 2007 United Kingdom floods, all of the washlands filled to capacity, but the regulator could not be operated as it had been vandalised.
With the development of industry and the Dearne and Dove Canal, the river became grossly polluted in the early nineteenth century, and fish populations died. The West Riding River Board tried to address the problems as early as 1896, with limited success, and much of the river remained dead until the 1980s, when concerted attempts were made to clean industrial effluents before they were discharged, and to improve sewage treatment processes. Despite some setbacks, fish populations had been partially reinstated by the early 1990s. Channel engineering was carried out at Denaby in the 1990s, to re-introduce bends, deep pools and shallow gravel riffles, to assist fish spawning. In June 2015, salmon were reported in the river for the first time in 150 years.