The Holies and Lardon Chase are Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) owned and managed by the National Trust at the Goring Gap, designated primarily on the basis of their chalk grasslands, which are generally acknowledged to be the best chalk grasslands remaining in Berkshire. The SSSIs are also of great importance for their rich invertebrate fauna.
Bioscan has worked with the National Trust since 2002, carrying out annual monitoring of scarce plants (including early gentian and bastard toadflax) and invertebrates (including Adonis blue, chalkhill blue, small blue, dingy skipper, grizzled skipper, striped lychnis, hornet robberfly and the pyralid moth Mecyna flavalis). In addition Bioscan carries out an intensive quadrat survey of the chalk grasslands every 4 years. The monitoring data is used to inform the success of the National Trust’s grazing management regime, identify any remedial actions and advise on changes or adjustments where felt to be necessary in order to uphold the condition of the SSSIs and promote nature conservation in the wider National Trust landholding.