Awesome wildlife experiences on our doorstep!
Late autumn on the Lizard coastline can be a wild time and, for grey seal mums, major life events are unfolding beneath steep cliffs edged by crashing waves. Hardy volunteers from Cornwall Seal Group Research Trust (CSGRT) brave the elements daily to protect our seals at this important time. Such intense research studies reveal fascinating insights into the lives of these precious marine mammals – Cornwall’s speciality marine species. The stories that unfold can be a magical experience for all – never to be forgotten.
Calling Botanists for Survey Days in June Please
We are looking for botanists of all abilities to help with the first repeat of our 4-yearly quadrat survey on the Lizard National Nature Reserve. If you fancy getting involved in a few days of sun-drenched (not guaranteed), unique botanising (guaranteed) then this could be for you. It is a bit of a botanical jamboree with about 40 botanists taking part – half from Natural England and half local naturalists.
Since 2011 over 850 volunteers from NE and our partner organisations have participated in vegetation surveys on Long Term Monitoring Network (LTMN) sites. The Lizard NNR is part of this network and is due to be resurveyed this year from the 20th June – 23rd June (inclusive). The survey will help us to understand how changes in the natural environment relate to climate change, air pollution and land management and we'd like to invite you to take part.
The Loyal Meneage Volunteer Cavalry
Archaeology, like modern art, may have boundaries. Largely undefined, they shift as necessary. The Second World War, ruinously present on the Lizard, falls within the remit of both. Anti tank walls and blockhouses slowly become lumps in an erosive sea.
A chambered tomb1 and anchor blocks of long gone radar antennae seem determined to contest each others' longevity on Crousa Downs. Now there are photographs of artefacts under construction and recordings of their builders, but a gifted archaeologist can still tease a gripping tale from the missing bits.
Local volunteers restore wetlands at Penrose
Leaky dam taking shape
A project to help restore wildlife habitats and access on the Penrose Estate near Helston that began last year has now been completed thanks to the help of local volunteers and working groups.
A partnership of conservation groups came together with the aim of improving the willow carr alongside the River Cober. The work, which was coordinated by the National Trust, included coppicing and felling small trees and building leaky dams comprised of carefully-stacked logs and brash. Sections of path were also raised and re-surfaced to improve access for walkers.
The Helford River
..... a dynamic ever changing habitat, shaped by wind and tide.
The wild weather we are having now has prompted me to write something about the dynamic nature of an estuary and the effect of the wind. Estuaries can vary widely in character depending upon their aspect and exposure to prevailing winds. The Helford Stretches from East to West, it’s wide open mouth leads out onto Falmouth Bay, exposed to winds from the East and to a lesser extent the West. ‘When the wind is in the east, 'tis neither good for man nor beast’ is a well-known country saying and certainly no one would want to be out on the Helford when a good Easterly is blowing!
A Lizard Bird Diary
Dear Friends of the Lizard,
Steve Townsend at Natural England has asked me to write and tell you about my new book, A Lizard Bird Diary: A Study of the Birds of the South Lizard Peninsula 1970-2015. Much has been written about the flora of the Lizard but apart from two breeding surveys, the birds have received comparatively little attention.
My book, which I hope in some measure will help to fill in this gap, summarises 45 years of fieldwork beginning in April 1970 with my first visit to the Lizard when I was a young 23 year old art student studying in Falmouth.
Fast‐forward to 2007 and with my shelves bulging with notebooks I felt I was ready to begin a project to synthesise all this data although I really did not expect that it would take up to November 2016 until completion and final publication.