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Foulshaw Moss

Ospreys use Foulshaw Moss Nature Reserve as a nesting site. To visit for free see the directions below. Work to install board walks is ongoing but visitors can get to the raised viewing platform.

Improving Foulshaw Moss for nature   Help to protect our ospreys at Foulshaw Moss Nature Reserve

This nature reserve is an internationally rare lowland raised peatbog. High and stable water levels are essential to the health and long term future of the bog. Unfortunately this bog has suffered in the past from a steady lowering of water levels and a gradual deterioration of the peatland and its wildlife.


In partnership with Natural England, the Trust has been carrying out significant habitat restoration works which aim to raise water levels and secure the long term future of Foulshaw Moss. Conifer trees have been removed from around the edges as they have served to dry the peat and excavators have blocked drains and created small low bunds that retain water on the bog. 


Following the completion of restoration works, improvements to parking and access will be made, with new walkways and signage planned.  Slowly we are seeing the characteristic bog vegetation of Sphagnum moss, cotton grass, cranberry and bog rosemary reclaiming the site. 


Foulshaw Moss was purchased in 1998 with help from the Heritage Lottery Fund. Since then, a number of additional areas have been acquired.


Getting here

By car: Travelling west along A590 towards Barrow in Furness, at the end of the dual carriageway at Gilpin Bridge, continue for 1km/0.6 miles. Immediately before a signed parking layby on the west-bound carriageway turn left down a track. Go through the gate and continue until a small car parking area is reached. Travelling east on the A590 towards Kendal, pass the junction for Witherslack and continue for 0.6km/0.4 miles. The track to the reserve is on the right immediately after the parking layby. Please take care when turning into the reserve from this direction, as the road can be extremely busy. Do not take the turning signposted for 'Foulshaw', the turning for Foulshaw Moss is a short way further towards Barrow.
By bicycle:The reserve is on National Route 72 (Walney to Wear).
By public transport:  Buses run from Barrow in Furness, Ulverston, Newby Bridge, Grange over Sands and Kendal to Witherslack

Red deer in snow - copyright Ben Hall    Osprey nesting at Foulshaw Moss nature reserve in 2014

Read blog - Ospreys at Foulshaw Moss 

Read blog - Brilliant bog life inspires new art


Species and habitats

Red Deer, Adder, Emperor Moth, Green Hairstreak

Nearby nature reserves

Meathop Moss
1 miles - Cumbria Wildlife Trust
1 miles - Cumbria Wildlife Trust
Nichols Moss
2 miles - Cumbria Wildlife Trust

Nature reserve map

Reserve information

Near Witherslack
Map reference
SD 458 837
Great for...
Best time to visit
Apr - Aug
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350.00 hectares
Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI)
Special Areas of Conservation (SAC)
Level access along board walk. Ground is soft and can be very wet.
Walking information
Access at the moment is to viewing platform only due to ongoing work From the car park there is a circular walk which crosses one of the better areas of remnant vegetation on boardwalk to a viewing platform and then uses the main track to return (0.8km/0.5 miles). Take care!. Please keep to waymarked paths and trails. The ground off the path is very soft and there are areas of deep water. Ticks and adders are present on the reserve in large numbers.
Small parking area on site
Dogs must be on lead
Grazing animals
Cattle at times
Reserve manager
John Dunbavin
Tel: 01539 816300