Phase 1 habitat survey of an interesting industrial estate, Cumbria (2015)

‘Interesting industrial estate’ is not in fact an oxymoron.  The last time I surveyed an industrial estate in Cumbria it was chuffing with great crested newts, and quite a surprise, and this site was no less unexpected.

I had checked the aerial photo beforehand, so I knew the site wasn’t all buildings and amenity grassland, but I wasn’t expecting this:

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Warrington Plant Group at Croft (2015)

Our mission at Croft was to record all the plants we could find in this 1km square which has been sadly neglected by botanical recorders according to the BSBI.  I was joined by my friends N, a fellow botanist, and P, who lives in the square and thus had no excuse for not attending (!).

We did really well for an urban/arable square with 140 plant species including this nice field pansy and whatever this hawkweed is (Hieracium vagum ?)

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Mansfield botanical survey, Nottinghamshire (2015)

Usually, conifer plantations don’t get much botanical attention, but in this case I was asked to prepare a species list for a plantation site to inform botanical monitoring of a development of holiday chalets.  I had been told there was little to see and, yes, most of the undeveloped parts of the site were plantation trees, bramble and bracken.  But every site has its compensations, and at this site these included a nice cafe, toilets, good weather and some pretty plants:

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Dusk bat survey, Preston (2015)

Another exciting instalment in my series of bat surveys with absolutely no bats!!!  Well, a few pipistrelles knocking around, but certainly nothing coming out of the target building.  Plenty of interested onlookers, though, and a good opportunity for some public education about bats :)  And it was nice to catch up with some of my fellow surveyors assembled by the team leader, as we hadn’t seen each other for ages….

BSBI bramble weekend, Flintshire (2015)

This is my second bramble weekend – perhaps I’m a glutton for punishment as I don’t feel any more able to identify brambles than I did when I started, but it is always enjoyable to see and appreciate the diversity of brambles and to watch the experts at work.  This time the bramble weekend was in Flintshire and involved racing round the lanes trying to record as many different species as possible !  We did brilliantly with dozens of bramble records collected, including three which we think are new to Wales and many more new 10K records. Continue reading

Water pipeline Phase 1 habitat survey, Conwy, North Wales (2015)

A nice straightforward project, this:  a replacement water pipeline running through intensive arable and improved pasture fields for a client committed to retaining all mature trees and protecting nearby ancient woodland.  Thank you for making this so easy !

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BSBI Welsh AGM 2015

I had a lovely long weekend in Snowdonia with friends from the BSBI at the Welsh AGM, which was based at Plas Tan y Bwlch near Maentwrog.

We investigated loads of habitats in the local area and recorded loads of interesting plants :)  Here are some snaps from the weekend of botanists in action !

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