This large ornamental pond at Exbury has been adapted for the insects with dragonfly-friendly, native aquatic and marginal plants. Floating pontoons allow visitors to get close to the wildlife action, an outdoor shelter has been built to act as a classroom for local groups and school children, and Exbury’s popular Rhododendron Line steam railway has a new Dragonfly Halt platform to make it easy for more people to explore the area.
Dragonflies are crucial bio-indicators of the health of the UK’s rivers, canals and ponds but modern-day development, drainage and pollution have meant dragonfly numbers have fallen dramatically. This new wildlife area hopes to tackle this decline, creating a haven for the many fascinating and beautiful dragonfly and damselfly species that live in Hampshire. Whilst at the same time giving our visitors the opportunity to see dragonflies up close and learn about these captivating insects.
Designed with the help of the UK’s leading dragonfly experts, the new pond area at Exbury boasts info boards filled with dragonfly facts and take-away tips on how visitors can attract the wonderful creatures into their gardens.
Dragonfly Pond was officially opened by naturalist and broadcaster Nick Baker on Saturday 17th July 2021, coinciding with the start of Dragonfly Week. Nick said:
“Most people think of ponies when they think of the New Forest, but I think of dragonflies. Exbury Gardens is now a Dragonfly Hotspot, within a dragonfly hotspot, so what better place to come to know your dragonflies!”
Watch the full opening ceremony here:
Exbury's new Dragonfly Pond has been designated a Dragonfly Hotpot by the British Dragonfly Society thanks to its dragonfly learning zone and is now one of just 6 in the UK. Dragonfly Hotspots are special places, carefully chosen by the British Dragonfly Society because they support a good variety of dragonfly and damselfly species, are easy to access, and can provide opportunities for local communities to get involved with dragonfly conservation and events.