Biodiversity in Oxfordshire
Oxfordshire has a wealth of natural heritage assets including 7 Special Areas of Conservation (SACs). These SACs are distributed across the county and form part of a wider ecological network of 36 Conservation Target Areas (CTAs), along with many of the 111 Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) and 472 Local Wildlife Sites. Parts of 9 Natural Character Areas (NCAs) fall within Oxfordshire’s county boundary, reflecting its great range of landscape types.
Throughout the UK, each County has a Local Biodiversity Action Plan (BAP) that identifies priority habitats and species. Wild Oxfordshire is working with partners to develop a new Oxfordshire Biodiversity 2020 Strategy, with updated targets for habitat restoration and creation. The strategy is being developed with consideration of “Making Space for Nature” Lawton Report 2010, the new Biodiversity 2020 strategy, Water Framework Directives, Catchment Delivery Plans and new Forestry commitments. Changes will be posted on these pages as they are agreed.
Section 41 (41) of the Natural Environment and Rural Communities (NERC) Act, which came into force on 1st October 2006, requires the Secretary of State to publish a list of habitats and species which are of principle importance for the conservation of biodiversity in England. This list is used to guide decision-makers such as public bodies, including local and regional authorities, in implementing their duty under section 40 of the NERC Act, to have regard to the conservation of biodiversity in England when carrying out their normal functions.