The River Eyjafjardara Estuary, which is divided into Leira (Flats) and Holmar (Islets), extends from Hoephners Pier at the end of the gully Budargil to the gravel beds of Melgerdismelar in the Eyjafiord Valley, and has distinctive flora and diverse wildlife. Formerly this was the most important hayfield in the whole area, and haymaking and grazing prevented the growth of trees and shrubs. Large areas are now protected. Tea-leaved willow and woolly willow have spread across the Holmar, where there is a continuous cover of Lyngye’s sedge along with other plant species, such as small reed, cotton grass, marsh cinquefoil and bog bean.
Occasional birch grows there, generally outreaching the often-sizeable shrub. On the banks are also stunted tea-leaved willow, usually the creeping variety, with considerable garden angelica and wild angelica in many places. The rare species marsh felwort and smaller fringed gentian occur there, too, while tall water horsetail and rushes grow in the ditches. The banks are covered with the densest patches of red clover found in Iceland; this imported species probably spread from the „Old Plant Nursery” where it also occurs. Patches of tufted vetch lend a blue colour to the islets in late summer.
Photo Credit: Bjarki Sigursveinsson