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Reserves Survey & Monitoring

Devon Wildlife Trust and Biffa

Devon Wildlife Trust has been working with the ‘Biffa fund’ to establish a core area for wildlife within North West Devon linking three principle reserves.  Key to this is understanding their relationship and subsequent management for a number of important transient species.

Initially Stowford Moor & Veilstone Moor nature reserves required up to date survey to provide a record of the habitats on site, and the plant communities that currently exist.  This work will inform the management plans for their restoration and provide a robust baseline of their biodiversity value.

In addition, an invertebrate survey at key locations at the newly acquired Meeth nature reserve is required to inform the management of the open grassland restoration areas.  Fortunately intensive survey and mapping has already occurred here and it is already directing effort on site.

In Summary DBRC have been engaged to:

  • Conduct an extended phase 1 survey of each site to include classification of NVC communities/affinities.
  • Complete multiple quadrats for each habitat and record the species composition and cover, marking the location of quadrats on map
  • Analysis of samples using tablefit (desk based exercise)
  • Report and mapping of communities
  • 2x2m quadrats for short vegetation, 4x4m quadrats for taller vegetation, 10x10m for very tall vegetation or woodland field layers, 50x50m for woodland canopy. Take samples from homogenous stands of vegetation, may be less straightforward with mosaic habitats and linear features.

Ongoing collation of monitoring data from these quadrats will help measure the impact of management regimes, and inform wider strategies for habitat restoration within the trust's reserves.

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