British Wildlife Wiki

Shingle Beach - WWC Archives

Shingle Beaches are found around Britain's coasts. It is generally a harsh habitat to live in, but as always, many species have adapted to survive there.


There are many plants which often form a grip in the pebbles of shingle beaches. They include plants such as Rock Samphire, Sea-holly and Sea Kale, all species which are restricted to shingle beaches and similar habitats. Also, many plants which are found elsewhere make their home in the shingle, including Yellow Horned-poppy, Wild Thyme and Sea Campion. Other plants commonly seen on shingle beaches are Bittersweet, Hare's-foot Clover, Sea Plantain.

Various rare plants are found in shingle beaches, including the Shore Dock.


While being a harsh habitat to live in, invertebrates are few and far between, but do occur. Sandhoppers are often in large numbers on shingle beaches, espcially those with a hightide mark, and Kelp Flies are often in their thousands, breeding in the washed up seaweeds. The Scaly Cricket is a rare cricket only found at 2 shingle beaches in Britain. Various spiders, beetles, earwigs and other invertebrates can be found if enough searching is done on shingle beaches.

The strandline will often wash up crab carapaces or cuttlebones.


While often being isolated, and near a food supply, many birds will breed on shingle beaches, and will often have eggs which look like pebbles. Such examples are Little Terns and Oystercatchers.


Common Seals will often haul themselves onto beaches, including shingle beachs.

Species Seen[]


Summer Autumn Winter
Rock Samphire Little Tern Common Mallow Herring Gull