Small ferns, birds and bulbs: the natural history of St Agnes
The southernmost tip of the British Isles, St Agnes is the smallest of the five inhabited islands of the Isles of Scilly. Here, Rosemary Parslow describes the natural history, wildlife and habitats of St Agnes, and touches on the implications of sea-level rise and climate change.
Look south-west from the mainland of Cornwall and, on a clear day, you can just see the Isles of Scilly, 45km away. It does not need much imagination to think that, some four or five thousand years ago, seafaring people would have visited the islands, if only for freshwater while on long voyages and perhaps to hunt seals and collect shellfish.