This week the Sid Valley Biodiversity Group is marking its first birthday and we invite you to join in the celebrations.

 

View from Delderfield meadow
View from Delderfield meadow

We set up the group a year ago with the aim of working with the community to celebrate and enhance local biodiversity. The Sid Valley is a beautiful area with a diversity of habitats and wildlife. But, like most parts of the country, it is being affected by climate change and habitat loss, resulting in a reduction of some species.

 

We want to support people to take action to help reverse this decline in biodiversity.We would also like volunteers to work with us on citizen science projects to gather data on various species. These projects allow non-scientists to make an important contribution to scientific research and will help provide evidence for a nature recovery plan.

 

The launch of the group coincided with a time, during the first lockdown, when many people were spending more time outdoors than previously, noticing nature and the changing seasons in more detail and feeling the health benefits of time spent in the natural world. People have told us that they have a new-found interest in nature and are more curious about the names of plants, trees, birds and insects and their lifecycles and whether numbers are declining or increasing. We hope you enjoy reading our weekly column in the Sidmouth Herald where we shine a light on different aspects of nature.

 

In this anniversary week, we’d love to hear from you. What do you enjoy about nature in Sid Valley? What wildlife have you spotted that has fascinated you? Where are your favourite outdoor spaces to spend time?

 

Please send us a picture or two and a few words explaining what nature in the Sid Valley means to you. With your permission we will share these images and words on our social media sites. We know we can reach even more people through social media so we have a website and accounts on Facebook and Instagram. We will also share some of them in a future column in the Sidmouth Herald.

 

Please email your images and words, by Friday 9 July, to – sidvalleybiodiversity@yahoo.com

 

We also have a programme of walks and talks and a wildflower treasure hunt during this week where you can learn more about our local natural environment. We hope you will join in with some of these events which, in brief are:

 

Monday 28 June – 11:00 guided walk on Mutter’s Moor from Peak Hill car park.

Tuesday 29 June – 14:00 guided tour of a woodland garden in Sidmouth.

Wednesday 30 June – 10:30 walk/talk on maritime plants from main entrance to Connaught Gardens.

Thursday 1 July – 15:00 Zoom talk by Westcountry Rivers Trust.

Friday 2 July – 10:30 Sidmouth Arboretum guided tree walk from Sidmouth Museum.£2.50 per person.

Saturday 3 July – 14:00 Alma Field wildflower treasure hunt.

Sunday 4 July 10:30 walk/talk The Knapp Community Nature Reserve.

 

For full details of the programme of events look out for posters and what’s on guides or visit the group’s website, www.sidvalleybiodiversity.org.uk/events/

 

For further information about the group or to join the newsletter mailing list, email sidvalleybiodiversity@yahoo.com

Article by Sheila Meades

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