The n -alkane technique (Dove and Mayes, 1991; Mayes and Dove, 2000) has been developed as a method to determine the voluntary intake of herbivores grazing freely at pasture. The technique relies on the fact that each herbage species contain a unique profile of odd-chain n -alkane compounds within the cuticular waxes of each plant part. Whilst some n -alkane profiles for the major intensively managed herbage species are available, there is little comprehensive information on the n -alkane profiles of many of the herbage species found commonly in semi-natural vegetation communities (SNVC) in the hills and uplands of the UK. If the n -alkane technique is to be extended for use with herbivores grazing SNVC’s, it is necessary that such profiles be determined. This study details the n -alkane concentrations found in ten herbage species sampled from SNVC’s in the UK during late summer in 2000.