Looking Back On A Busy Year In Wales

Colin Cheesman

Colin Cheesman

Head of Plantlife Cymru

14th December 2018

Volunteers-Cae-Blaen-Dyffryn-counting-butterfly-orchids 980x452.jpg

Counting orchids at Cae Blaen-dyffryn

It’s been an action packed 12 months with events, training and conservation work taking place across Wales.

This year saw the 20th anniversary of the annual wildflower and orchid survey at our reserves in Gwynedd and Carmarthenshire. Thanks to our amazing volunteers we recorded over 10,000 butterfly-orchids across the two reserves. We were also involved in recording fen orchids at Kenfig which resulted in the highest numbers of plants found in recent years. Later in the year we helped Chris Packham’s Bioblitz in Wales which included counting over 300 plant species on the Great Orme Important Plant Area!

We raised awareness of the threat to our farmland flowers by contributing to a poppy exhibition at the National Museum Cardiff, producing a short film and working with Natural Resources Wales, National Trust and the Welsh Government to map arable flora and advise farmers on management. On the Carmarthen Dunes, we carried out surveys so that we can measure the impact of our conservation work there.

The CENNAD Apprenticeship Scheme continued to nurture and support future lichenologists across Wales through workshops, training days and field visits. It’s been great to see the apprentices gaining in confidence and venturing out to look for lichens independently as Ross Grisbrook did in January. The Ceredigion Meadows Groups, established late 2017, has been meeting throughout the year. There have been several workshops and training sessions and members have been supporting each other to improve their management skills and knowledge.

We celebrated National Meadows Day with the National Trust at Dinefwr, held a wildflower walk at Kenfig National Nature Reserve and ran many other events which have helped us share our love of plants, lichens and fungi with even more people. We’ve also been developing a project in Bridgend to help people learn more about the wonderful wild plants and nature on their doorstep.

We couldn’t do any of our work without our members, supporters and funders, so a big thank you from all of us at Plantlife Cymru!

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