Short video sessions where we will be meeting members of the community who are helping nature to thrive in the North Devon Biosphere. We will be finding out what projects they are involved in, what they have done for nature in their patch and asking what makes the North Devon Biosphere special to them. We hope you will feel inspired to help nature in your own area, if you have any suggestions for people you would like to hear more from the please let us know!
EPISODE 6: Luke, Farm Wilder
In Episode 6 of Nature Natters we meet Luke one of the directors Farm Wilder (farmwilder.org), a community interest company and a non profit organisation that works to make farming more sustainable and better for wildlife.Luke talks about how livestock farming can be a tool for nature conservation as well as food production and gives advice for both farmers and consumers in choosing sustainable farming practices. Farm Wilder meat comes from slow growing native breeds fed on Devon grass. They focus on management that support two particular species; Marsh Fritillary butterflies (once widespread in Britain but now reduced to a few last strongholds in the West, including Dartmoor) and Cuckoos (also in decline).
EPISODE 7: Bev, North Devon Dynamic Dunescapes
Beautiful Braunton Burrows is home to the second largest sand dune system in the UK and, as it’s an internationally important site for wildlife and sand dune habitats, the area is a designated Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) and part of the North Devon UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. Since the 1950s, the landscape here has become increasingly vegetated. Fast and widespread growth of shrubs and plants which stabilise the sand mean that lots of early successional dune stages – young, mobile dunes which have lots of bare sand – have been lost. As a result, many of the threatened species that live in these dunes have been rapidly declining – some have even become extinct from the area.
The project in Devon will help rejuvenate sand dune systems at Braunton Burrows and Woolacombe. Work in Devon is led by Plantlife and National Trust, working closely with Christie Estates.
The work here will create new areas of bare sand. This willFim give these threatened bare sand-loving wildlife, like sand lizards and a huge variety of plants, places where they can thrive again. This will also mean more sand is available to move through the area and build up dune ridges. As we remove scrub to allow some of these dunes the freedom to shift again, we’ll also be removing invasive plant species such as Japanese rose and sea buckthorn; these plants, which don’t usually grow at this site, can grow very quickly and outcompete native species which have always been a part of this landscape. We’ll also restore the dune slacks. By removing some of the fast-growing willow species, we can improve the slack pools which are essential for many of the dunes’ important amphibian species.
Find out more and make your volunteering Pledge for Nature at https://dynamicdunescapes.co.uk/project/devon/
EPISODE 8: Exmoor National Park with Jackie Kiberd and the ENNIS PROJECT volunteers
The Exmoor Non-Native Invasive Species Project (ENNIS) is helping to control the spread of invasive non-native species on Exmoor through trialling innovative approaches and working with local communities and volunteers to tackle species such as Japanese knotweed, Himalayan balsam, montbretia, skunk cabbage and signal crayfish. In this episode we join Nicky Green and volunteers on the River Barle where there are carrying out signal crayfish monitoring and control. Nicky Green, from Nicky Green Associates has been working alongside Exmoor National Park as part of her PhD studies for over 5 years, exploring a methodology for dealing with the invasive American Signal Crayfish.
Invasive american signal crayfish are a major threat to river biodiversity, salmon populations and cause bank erosion, collapse and sediment pollution as well as contributing to the spread of invasive Montbretia.
To find out more about the ENNIS project and how to get involved in volunteering with Exmoor National Park click here.
EPISODE 9: The Weare Giffard community orchard
'In today's society it's good to have places where you can stop and stare and not rush around' Keith Hughes, instigator or reinstating a long forgotten orchard in the village of Weare Giffard (between Bideford and Torrington). Kieth shows us around the site and gives some great advice for communities looking to create their own community orchard.
EPISODE 10: Hedge Management and special species with Rob Wolton
CLICK HERE TO WATCH EPISODES 1-5
Please feel free to share these conversations with your community groups, friends and family!
Jul 19, 2021
Every month we like to reflect and celebrate all the brilliant pledges that have taken place across the Biosphere. This month, we have launched our new Nature Recovery Declaration!
May 31, 2021
Every month we like to reflect and celebrate all the brilliant pledges that have taken place. Our Pledge for Nature Coordinator Bryony Paul left the project at the end of May so she has written a few words to reflect on the last 18 months and we look forward to welcoming her successor in June.
Apr 30, 2021
Every month we like to review the brilliant pledges tand events that have happened. This month we had Earth Day (theme 'restore our earth'), we visited Braunton to give out house martin nest cup materials and wildflower seeds and we have helped to support a new community rewilding project in South Molton. Barnstaple in Bloom also organised a brilliant 'Tidy the Taw' event. This month we have a special guest writer Bethany Lee (volunteer) who has written a section about how to enjoy the sunshine in an environmental responsible manner which ties in well with the Devon wide Naturally Healthy May campaign!
To Our Biosphere
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