Super Sexy Surveying Innit’ (SSSI) or maybe it’s Sites of Special Scientific Interest….

Originally posted on Wicked and wild, it's a nature blog:

The rangers and volunteers spent a week with Natural England regional officer Flemming in assessing the status of our heathland Special Sites of Scientific Interest (SSSI).  Every few years the SSSI sites need to be surveyed to check grazing pressure, presence of disease or pests, age structure and health of vegetation and disturbance.  We walked roughly 100 metre transects looking out for bare ground, signs of invasive species and general vegetation characteristic, and then periodically stopped to get coverage percentages using a quadrat sampling method.

Flemming training us on how to assess the heath within the quadrat Flemming training us on how to assess the heath within the quadrat

Dan C and Dan F started to foster an intense interest in lichens Dan C and Dan F started to foster an intense interest in lichens

IMG_9695 - Copy

It was really interesting spending time on the heath with Flemming, an incredibly knowledgeable man. I learnt how to differentiate between bell heather, cross leaved heather and ling (common heather), that tufty mosses (acrocarpous) indicate that ground has been disturbed…

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Exmoor community groups celebrating Bogtastic funding success.

Four Exmoor community groups have received donations totalling £1000 thanks to the Bogtastic Festival held at Simonsbath. The Exmoor Community Youth Club was one of the fortunate recipients. “There was so much to do at Bogtastic.  We loved being involved in the organisation and the day itself enabled our young people to further enjoy Exmoor’s wonderful moorland. We look forward to the next one!” (Cathy Nicholls, Exmoor Community Youth Club) Bogtastic was a celebration of fun and learning about Exmoor’s amazing bogs, wildlife and heritage. The 2014 event saw literally hundreds of people of all ages enjoying the activities based in and around Simonsbath. The many highlights included Bog Safari’s, tours of Simonsbath sawmill and the welly wanging competition.

Bog bouncing - a Bogtastic favourite !

Bog bouncing – a Bogtastic favourite !

The other benefiting groups were, Dulverton & District Young People’s Project,  South Molton Scouts  and  The Friends of Simonsbath Sawmill. All the groups  contributed to the organisation of the event. The Dulverton and District Young Peoples Project were just one of the many youth groups which attended. Jude Atkins, the Project leader, highlighted how the projects young people “ had learnt so much as well as having a lot of fun! Bogtastic is always a real hit with the group. Thank you for another wonderful time”. David Rolls, from the Heart of Exmoor, “It was great to see so many people out enjoying Exmoor’s wonderful wildlife and heritage. We are extremely grateful to everyone who donated on the day and to our event sponsors, especially, Exmoor National Park, South West Water and the Heritage Lottery Fund.”

Bogtastic 2015 is on Wednesday 29 July.  Visit  http://www.exmoor-nationalpark.gov.uk  for  further details.  Check www.facebook.com/ExmoorMires for updates. If you would like to be involved in this year’s event please contact David on 01398 322164.

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Celebrating Exmoor Heritage in Photo Exhibition

800_EMLP 1st Gaynor Gough The Watchful Tower Lynmouth (sml)

Exmoor National Park features in a new photographic exhibition with pictures of a powerful Red Deer stag, the ancient Piles Mill and the proud Rhenish Tower of Lynmouth. Minehead photographer Gaynor Gough’s image ‘The Watchful Tower’ won the ‘Celebrating Exmoor’s Heritage’ category sponsored by The Heart of Exmoor Scheme and now her work is part of the fantastic array of photography on display at Barnstaple.

Scheme manager Jason Ball, who judged the Exmoor category said: “The Heart of Exmoor Scheme champions the moorland landscape and its heritage, so it’s fantastic to be part of the North Devon Heritage Photographic Competition and to have these images of Exmoor National Park on display at the museum. They truly capture the character of Exmoor’s natural and cultural heritage.”

“This year is particularly special as Exmoor National Park celebrates its 60th anniversary. Judging nearly a hundred pictures takes time but it is always a privilege and I was delighted to look through such a strong field of entries to a heritage photo competition.”

Winners in the Exmoor category took away vouchers and an Exmoor Flag mug, and commended runners-up received Exmoor National Park calendars. The annual competition is organised by Melanie Terrell at the Museum for Barnstaple and North Devon. The Heart of Exmoor Scheme is run by the Exmoor Moorland Landscape Partnership supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund and Exmoor National Park Authority’s Partnership Fund.

The North Devon In Pictures exhibition is now open 10am – 4pm Monday to Saturday until 10 January 2015 at the Museum for Barnstaple and North Devon. Admission is free.

 

ENDS

Editors Notes

Full results list here: http://www.devonmuseums.net/North-Devon-Heritage-Photographic-Competition-Results/Latest-News/The-Museum-of-Barnstaple-and-North-Devon/Museum-News

Media contact

Clare O’ Connor, Exmoor National Park Authority. Direct Line: 01398 322244. Mobile: 07772 092128.

BACKGROUND INFORMATION

Heart of Exmoor “Helping people to enjoy and appreciate Exmoor’s moorland and supporting those who take care of it.”

The Exmoor Moorland Landscape Partnership runs the Heritage Lottery Funded Heart of Exmoor Scheme to champion the Exmoor’s moorland heritage, investing a million pounds to benefit the landscape and local communities. Projects have generated over 12,000 visitors, trips for 7,000 schoolchildren, 3,000 volunteer days, and 500 skills trainees. The Partnership brings together eleven organisations such as the Exmoor National Park Authority as lead partner, the National Trust, the Exmoor Trust, and the RSPB, and is chaired by The Exmoor Society. Visit heartofexmoor.org.uk for details.

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Waxing lyrically over Waxcaps – A Successful Fungi Foray

A team of twenty helped to successfully survey the grounds of Nettlecombe Court Field Studies Centre (FSC)  for the nationally rare Waxcap fungi as part of the New Ecologists Waxcap Fungi training workshop.  Nearly 30 species of fungi were found including a number of waxcaps. A big thankyou to the ‘fun guy’ tutor Pat Watts Mabbot from Exmoor National Park and the FSC for hosting. Our New Ecologists training programme for 2015 is currently being finalised so watch this space! And don’t forget if you have seen any Waxcap mushrooms please please report them to the Exmoor Wildwatch team. I would love to write more but there isn’t mushroom..

Tutor Pat elaborates

The full list of finds:

Hygrocybe persistens
Clavulinopsis corniculata
Hygrocybe conica
Hygrocybe russocoriacea
Hygrocybe virginea
Hygrocybe psittacina
Clavulinopsis fusiformis
Psilocybe semilanceata
Mycena flavoalba
Clavaria fistulosa
Hygrocybe ovina
Panoeolus
Hygroybe chlorophana
Bolbitius titubans
Clavulinopsis helvola
Laccaria laccata
Laccaria bicolour
Lactarius deterrimus
Hygrocybe pratensis
Hygrophorus camarophyllus
Boletus porosporus
Clavulina cristata
Macrotyphula fistulosa
Clavaria fumosa
Macrolepiota mastoidea
Chlorophyllum rhacodes
Clitocybe geotropa

Let the identification begin !

Identification – aided by cake and guides

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Pictures from the 2014 World Bolving Championships on Exmoor

All ears on the bolving with Exmoor ranger Richard Eales

An evening of bolving with Exmoor ranger Richard Eales (right)

Johnny Kingdom and his film crew joined a crowd of over 100 for the World Bolving Championships held at Exmoor National Park at the weekend (Sat 18 October 2014) where competitors roared their hearts out hoping to get stags to call back, all to raise money for the Devon Air Ambulance Trust! The annual contest had a junior category for the first time won by Harry Adderley, and the senior title went to Rob Follett.

For the full news story, interviews, etc, please contact Richard Eales, Exmoor National Park Ranger on 07772 989737. Please credit the photographer if you use any of these images: © Jason Ball.

Web-ready images

380_Junior winner Harry Adderley with Johnny Kingdom and Valerie Sherwin 2014_10_18
Above: Junior winner Harry Adderley with TV celebrity Johnny Kingdom and judge Valerie Sherwin.
380_L-R Johnny Kingdom + Valerie Sherwin + Rob Follett + Chrissie Thomas 2014_10_18_0263

Above: (Left to Right) Johnny Kingdom, judge Valerie Sherwin, winner Rob Follett, and Chrissie Thomas who presented the Phil Ferris Shield.

380_The Bolving Championship attracted all ages 2014_10_18_0189

Above: Dean Lewis with Lottie Holland – the youngest bolver of the event – watching and listening to Red Deer in the valley. The World Bolving Championship attracted a large crowd of all ages.

380_Johnny Kingdom bolving 2014_10_18_0210

Above: Johnny Kingdom bolving at Exmoor National Park.

380_Rob Follett bolving 2014_10_18_0223

Above: Rob Follett’s bolving impressed judges the most – congratulations to the World Champion!

600_A bolver with Exmoor ranger Richard Eales 2014_10_18_0197

Above: A bolver with Exmoor ranger Richard Eales.

600_Bolver in the spotlight 2014_10_18_0205

Above: A bolver in the spotlight.

600_Yosse Mason a junior bolver 2014_10_18_0216

Above: Yosse Mason was one of the junior bolvers.

600_Robin Offer bolving 2014_10_18_0219

Above: seasoned competitor Robin Offer came close to winning!

Full size images (for print)

Click to view full image. Then right-click to save…

All ears on the bolving with Exmoor ranger Richard Eales (right)2014_10_18_0203

Exmoor ranger Richard Eales (right) insists: “Quiet please for the bolving – this is serious!”

Junior winner Harry Adderley with Johnny Kingdom and Valerie Sherwin 2014_10_18

Above: Bolving Junior World Champion 2014 Harry Adderley with TV celebrity Johnny Kingdom and judge Valerie Sherwin.

L-R Johnny Kingdom + Valerie Sherwin + Rob Follett + Chrissie Thomas 2014_10_18_0263

Above: (Left to Right) Johnny Kingdom, judge Valerie Sherwin, World Champion Rob Follett, and Chrissie Thomas who presented the Phil Ferris Shield.

Johnny Kingdom bolving 2014_10_18_0210

Above: Johnny Kingdom bolving at Exmoor National Park.

A bolver with Exmoor ranger Richard Eales 2014_10_18_0197

Above: A bolver in the spotlight with Exmoor ranger Richard Eales.

Rob Follett bolving 2014_10_18_0223

Above: Rob Follett bolving.

Rob Follett listens for a stag to reply 2014_10_18

Above: World Champion bolver Rob Follett.

Please credit the photographer if you use any of these images: © Jason Ball.

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Natural Flood Management, 22 October 2014.

Nigel_Hester_at_HolnicoteFind out more about water catchment management projects and work on the ground at the National Trust’s Holnicote Estate. Get the farmer’s perspective from Robert Williams, and the view of the project manager from Nigel Hester. An event by the National Trust’s Holnicote Estate for the Exmoor Moorland Landscape Partnership, aimed at farmers, landowners and other countryside managers.

Transport grant available for Young Farmers Clubs – please ask for details.

Programme

11.00am: Presentations indoors at Piles Mill.

  1. a) NT/Defra Multi-objective Demonstration Flood Project – From Source to Sea
  2. b) Long-term monitoring and development.

12.30pm: Buffet Lunch.

1.00pm: Site visits.

  1. a) With NT tenant farmer Robert Williams, talking about land management considerations and working in partnership.
  2. b) Moorland site management to slow down water in the upper catchment.

2.30pm: End.

Venue

Piles Mill, then out on site after lunch. Piles Mill, Allerford, Somerset. (On the A39 near Porlock. Grid ref: SS 906 466.)

Book a place

Booking essential. Please contact Carole Elliot on holnicote@nationaltrust.org.uk or call 01643 862452 to reserve a place. Flyer / booking form: Natural-Flood-Management-22oct2014

Moorland - the Heart of ExmoorThe Exmoor Moorland Landscape Partnership Scheme is supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund and our local partners and funders. www.heartofexmoor.org.uk

 

 

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Swaling Equipment and Techniques 20 October 2014

Swaling Equipment and Techniques.
Monday 20 October, 2pm.
The tank grounds, North Hill, Minehead. (Grid ref: SS 953 474)

swaling-trio

Controlled burning can be daunting, especially with busy roads and walkers around. Come along to a free, informal event where ranger Tim Parish and National Park staff will go through the issues involved and how best to carry out burns in such places. Weather allowing, there will also be demonstrations and discussion over lighting and fire control techniques for different vegetation on Exmoor.

Exmoor National Park Authority also has equipment that can be loaned for free to those carrying out controlled burning. This includes a fogging unit/bowser, road signs, beaters etc. Find out how to borrow the kit and how to get the best out of it.

  • Light refreshments available.
  • Transport grant available for Young Farmers.

Book a place

Please email Elaine Woodcock ewoodcock@exmoor-nationalpark.gov.uk or call 01398 322231.

Booking form / poster: Swaling_event_20_Oct_2014

Moorland - the Heart of ExmoorThe Exmoor Moorland Landscape Partnership Scheme is supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund and our local partners and funders. www.heartofexmoor.org.uk

Posted in Exmoor National Park, Heart of Exmoor, moorland | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment