Ratby Disused Railway

Wildlife Highlights

The shady areas and rough borders provide habitat for a range of wildflowers and invertebrates. Greater Burnet Saxifrage grows near the motorway bridge as does a patch of Reeds. Common Valerian grows along the track where it borders the grazing fields. The brook adds further interest and supports a number of specialist water plants such as Water Speedwell, Water Crowfoot and Water Starwort. Banded Agrions flit along the brook in the summer months.

Wild places

Total species seen at this site: 110


This stretch of disused railway line runs between Ratby and Glenfield. Though the original line is broken by an industrial estate a connecting path joins up the two parts. For most of its length it runs parallel with the Rothley Brook and the section that flows under the motorway is included in this site. Much of it is shaded by overhanging trees but in places there is a grassy flora and the bordering field margins add further interest.

Latest records

Common Name Latin Name Date Recorded Recorded By
Bank VoleClethrionomys glareolus10/07/2017David Nicholls
Large-flowered Evening-primroseOenothera glazioviana10/07/2017David Nicholls
Rose campionSilene coronaria20/06/2017David Nicholls
Perforate St John's-wortHypericum perforatum20/06/2017David Nicholls
Hard RushJuncus inflexus20/06/2017David Nicholls
Ragged-RobinSilene flos-cuculi24/05/2017David Nicholls
Soft-rushJuncus effusus24/05/2017David Nicholls
Common ReedPhragmites australis24/05/2017David Nicholls
Grey WagtailMotacilla cinerea24/05/2017David Nicholls
Song ThrushTurdus philomelos01/02/2017David Nicholls
Ragged-RobinSilene flos-cuculi06/06/2016David Nicholls
Meadow Crane's-billGeranium pratense06/06/2016David Nicholls
SnowberrySymphoricarpos albus06/06/2016David Nicholls
WeldReseda luteola06/06/2016David Nicholls
Orange TipAnthocharis cardamines20/04/2016David Nicholls
Getting There

In Ratby, the start is next to the Railway Pub, though the first stretch of line is then brokem by a road that cuts across.

Group Common Name Latin Name Last Seen
Algae, Bacteria, VirusNostoc commune28/02/2014
Bees, Wasps, AntsEarly Mining BeeAndrena haemorrhoa24/05/2014
Bees, Wasps, AntsHoney BeeApis mellifera09/07/2011
Bees, Wasps, AntsTree BumblebeeBombus hypnorum19/06/2014
Bees, Wasps, AntsBuff-tailed BumblebeeBombus terrestris28/02/2014
BeetlesCantharis nigra19/06/2014
BeetlesCantharis rustica24/05/2014
BeetlesSwollen-thighed BeetleOedemera nobilis05/06/2014
BeetlesCommon Red Soldier BeetleRhagonycha fulva19/06/2014
BeetlesRutpela maculata19/06/2014
BirdsBuzzardButeo buteo15/03/2016
BirdsKestrelFalco tinnunculus28/02/2014
BirdsGrey WagtailMotacilla cinerea29/03/2016
BirdsChiffchaffPhylloscopus collybita29/03/2016
BirdsBullfinchPyrrhula pyrrhula23/03/2016
BirdsWrenTroglodytes troglodytes23/03/2016
BirdsSong ThrushTurdus philomelos01/02/2017
BugsCommon Flower BugAnthocoris nemorum09/07/2011
BugsCalocoris stysi19/06/2014
BugsNettle GroundbugHeterogaster urticae19/06/2014
BugsLeptopterna dolabrata19/06/2014
BugsLiocoris tripustulatus09/07/2011
BugsCommon Green CapsidLygocoris pabulinus19/06/2014
ButterfliesOrange TipAnthocharis cardamines20/04/2016
ButterfliesRingletAphantopus hyperantus09/07/2011
ButterfliesMeadow BrownManiola jurtina05/06/2014
ButterfliesLarge SkipperOchlodes sylvanus19/06/2014
ButterfliesGreen-veined WhitePieris napi09/07/2011
CranefliesTipula fascipennis24/05/2014
Dragonflies and DamselfliesAzure DamselflyCoenagrion puella24/05/2014