Issue 65

Natur Cymru 65 - Whinchats by Nick Derry

Wildlife conservation is a vocation filled with knowledgeable, passionate people working to make the world a better place. It is also a vocation with a reputation for being difficult to enter, and for poor pay. Lizzie Wilberforce explores what lies behind this, investigating some of the impacts on individuals, organisations, and what we seek to achieve for wildlife. This is a high priority issue for INCC, and we look at how some of the pressures on our sector could be addressed through positive change.

Iolo answers our questions about his life in conservation and broadcasting.

A rush leaved mountain plant springing out of the naked rocks!

So scarce is the iconic Snowdon lily within Wales that many more of us will have heard of the species than will ever have seen it in the field. Upland expert Barbara Jones explores the ecology of this diminutive plant, and describes some of the challenges faced in its conservation.

The distribution and ecology of a migrant songbird

Gwylio bywyd gwyllt yn ystod y cyfnod clo / watching wildlife in lockdown

Hafan i fywyd gwyllt ar arfordir trawiadol Morgannwg.

Vaughn Matthews sy’n ein cyflwyno ni i un o warchodfeydd natur llai cyfarwydd yr Ymddiriedolaeth Natur, ar arfordir De Cymru, ac yn esbonio beth sy’n ei gwneud mor arbennig i fywyd gwyllt.

Author Jonathan Mullard looks back at one of 2021's memorable wildlife moments, Wally the walrus

Recent biological records of note

An extract from the diary of Bertram Lloyd

Dros y blynyddoedd gellir dweud bod y prosiect hwn wedi adlewyrchu Afon Conwy ei hun. Gan ddechrau fel diferyn bach, yn llywio'i ffordd drwy rostir llwm a hardd, ffriddoedd a ffermydd, ac ennill momentwm a chyflymder yn raddol wrth iddi sisial a byrlymu i fod yn nant gyson. Weithiau bydd yn baglu a chwympo, ond mae bob amser wedi dal ati i symud. Ar hyd y ffordd mae wedi dod ar draws cydlifiadau lle mae wedi gorfod mynd gyda llif arall, ond bob tro yn ychwanegu at ei chyfoeth a'i dyfnder.

Over the years it could be said that this project has mirrored Afon Conwy itself. Beginning as a trickle, navigating its way through bleak and beautiful moorland, ffridd and farms and slowly gathering momentum and pace as it babbles and gurgles into a steady stream. Occasionally it tumbles down and falls, but it has always kept moving. Along the way it has encountered confluences where it must go with the flow of others, but each time adding to its richness and depth.

The Welsh Government has accepted the link between the climate change and nature emergencies. The re-shaping of agricultural support could mean incentives to landowners who do ‘the right thing’ for nature. James Robertson considers what it will take to square the circle so that farming and nature work together.

Welsh rivers are complex ecosystems subject to a myriad of human influences that affect their physical and ecological condition. Cardiff University PhD students Fiona Joyce and Emma Pharaoh explore how human activities affect rivers throughout their catchments, and how ecological monitoring can help us understand our impacts.

Peat-free horticulturalist provides his personal perspective on the ongoing use of peat in horticulture and the impacts on the habitats from which it is extracted.

Showcasing articles by early-career conservationists. In this edition, PhD student Laura Palmer introduces us to her work on the acoustic monitoring of Cardigan Bay’s dolphins.

Recent publications in the world of wildlife and conservation.

While the COP26 climate summit in Glasgow has been grabbing the headlines during 2021, the Convention on Biological Diversity COP15 is also now underway with talks taking place that will determine the global course of action for nature over the next decade. What will this mean for biodiversity in Wales?

Interest in the potential of seagrass habitat as a nature-based solution is growing as nations, businesses, regions and communities seek ways to address the climate and nature crises through restoring biodiversity on their coastlines. This article outlines how conservation efforts are restoring this habitat for the benefit of biodiversity and ecosystem services.

A profile of the cover artist, Nick Derry