The Exmoor Moorland Landscape Partnership has supported several meetings, demonstrations and workshops on Exmoor – now it’s time to go and see some other places! Each of these visits provide examples to compare and contrast with Exmoor. We will talk to the managers / farmers / rangers about their moorland management practices, experiences, the issues they deal with, and how they go about getting things done.
Aspects being covered include:
- different regimes of grazing, scrub management, etc.
- measures taken to mitigate issues / threats on moorland sites,
- special initiatives e.g. moorland wardens,
- community issues and working in partnership (e.g. with the MOD),
- how management varies for somewhat different environmental conditions…
The study trips
Pebblebed Heaths, Clinton Devon Estates, nr Budleigh Salterton
Wednesday 3July, minibus will leave @ 9am from Exmoor House in Dulverton and will return around 5pm
The Nature Conservation Manager, Sam Bridgewater will show us how they manage their heathlands – they are under considerable pressure. Topics will include: heather restoration, the conservation wardens, and how the estate operates. Sam is also keen to show us areas around the River Otter where they are working to develop a restoration plan to reconnect the river to its floodplain.
Surrey Heaths and the Ashdown Forest (2 days)
Wednesday 17July, leaving @ 9am from Exmoor House in Dulverton and will return Thursday 18th July around 6pm
After a picnic lunch James Herd, ranger for the Surrey Wildlife Trust grazing team, will take us on a tour of heathland sites. The heathland habitats have undergone change due to alteration of practices, grants and so on. Topics will include the Red Deer herds, grazing strategies, scrub management, fire management, partnership work and liaison (landowners, MOD training activity, etc.).
Following a good night’s sleep, we will arrive at the Ashdown Forest – originally a deer hunting forest in Norman times, now one of the largest free public access spaces in the South East. Chris Marrable, the Conservation Officer, will share his wealth of experience. Topics include: grazing, fire management and extensive networks of firebreaks; springtime swaling with consideration of birds such as Woodlark, woodland/heathland boundaries – how the forest is maintaining the status quo of 40%:60% respectively; concerns about nitrogen deposition on the SPA/SAC because of Habitat Regulations and the local development plan, working with 730 Commoners, intense visitor impact and the social and cultural disconnection from farming. Return travel to Exmoor after lunch.
For moorland managers from Exmoor, the Moorland Partnership will cover the costs of travel and accommodation; however food will not be provided. The support is thanks to our funders. The Exmoor Moorland Landscape Partnership Scheme is supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund and our local partners and funders. Part financed by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development 2007-2013: Europe investing in rural areas.
Reserve your place on the minibus!
If you are interested in any of these exciting and informative trips please email jpball(at)exmoor-nationalpark.gov.uk or call 01398 322164. Please note that we also have to book accommodation in advance of the Surrey trip.