30 members of the Society met at Westbury Arts Centre on Tuesday 8th May. In an introduction to the site, wildlife artist Kate Wyatt, and Martin Kincaid explained that the centre had gained funding last year for a project to research the history and natural history of Westbury farm.
The Society was invited to carry out surveys in the surrounding grounds to document the wildlife as part of this project. Mammals, birds, moths, and trees had been surveyed and this evening, members continued recording.
They were also able to look round inside the house, and to visit Kate’s studio as well as enjoying refreshments in the kitchen. A mothing session was held later in the evening and a trap was left overnight. Unfortunately temperatures dropped and a wind got up, so moth numbers were low. The final list was: Lime Hawk-moth, Brimstone (X3), Green Carpet (X3), Flame Shoulder (X2), Common Carpet, V Pug
Wood pasture is characterised by big old trees growing in open pasture-land
Wood Pasture and Parkland is home to some of the oldest living trees in the UK, whose value to wildlife is astounding. Their myriad of micro-habitats support some of our most endangered species. If you can’t picture what this habitat looks like, you’re not alone.
At their core, both wood pasture and parkland consist of big old trees with full crowns growing in grazed pasture, with abundant wood decay. They are what ecologists like to call a ‘mosaic habitat’ which means an area with a mixture of other habitats; the value of the mosaic is greater than the sum of its parts.
For too long this habitat has been overlooked, understudied and undervalued; we are only just starting to fully appreciate its real value.
The Wood Pasture and Parkland Network are determined to raise the profile of this incredible habitat with a series of 5 videos which introduce the ecological, biological, historical, cultural and landscape aspects of Wood Pasture and Parkland, describing best management techniques.
Although Bucks is an inland county, County Recorder Andy Harding has alerted Buck Bird Club members to the fact that the National Seabird Survey organised by JNCC, covers Cormorants and Common Terns , and encourages members to provide as much information as possible. Andy says “this year in particular it would be helpful if you could make additional efforts to record all breeding or attempted breeding information for Cormorants and Common Terns and enter that information with your sightings of these species on the Club website.”
‘The Seabird Monitoring Programme (SMP) aims to ensure that sample data on breeding numbers and performance of seabirds are collected, both regionally and nationally, to enable their conservation status to be assessed. Reports as seabird numbers and breeding success in Britain and Ireland’