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Conservation activities
at Lindow Common
Sunday 3 April 2011

Lindow Common Conservation Tasks and OPAL Bugs Count Survey.

Conservation and OPAL Bugs Count Survey

Ranger Paul Hughes explained the history of the site and the active management required by this
Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI), and pointed out some important local species like
Wild Cranberry plants.

After Paul showed us how to use loppers, spades and secateurs safely,
we set to work removing small saplings from the wet heathland habitat.
If left to develop the tress would soon choke the heathland
and start to destroy this valuable and rare habitat.

The wet heathland was a great habitat for frogs some of which we disturbed when working.
(Junior Leaders relocated the frogs to safer areas).

During the session we saw a pair of Treecreepers, a Grey Heron, a Kestrel,
a pair of Buzzards circling high overhead and a Jay.
We also heard a Willow Warbler (the first at Lindow this year and their earliest record for this migrant).

How hard can it be???

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Jonathan Taylor from OPAL joined us at Lindow Common for a very special session,
to trial an early draft of the forthcoming Bugs Count Survey.
We looked at different habitats and described them then we took part
in a 'Bug Race' to count different species of insects.

There were many more species active than we expected so early in the season.
We saw ladybirds, bumblebees, spiders, millipedes, a shieldbug
and a whole host of caterpillars suspended on silk threads from the birch trees.

The Group were asked to comment on the construction on the survey pack and it added an extra
dimension to the session to think through the methods and use of equipment as well as taking part.

Wildlife Explorers are delighted to be involved in the development of this survey and we hope
to run some of these surveys at our Bioblitz event at Brereton Heath in June!