Life on the Verge 'Biosphere'
Road verges are an important wildlife resource and an integral part of Devon's heritage. They provide a range of habitats and are increasingly important wildlife corridors for threatened species and pollinators. They also provide one of the only opportunities for us to see wildflowers on a daily basis, in towns and villages, as well as in a largely intensively managed countryside. For more background about the Life on the Verge - Biosphere project and it's goals please click here.
Get involved with the Life on the Verge -Biosphere project and help to protect and conserve these fascinating and vital pockets of wildlife. The first stage is for volunteers to survey verges across the Biosphere to find out which and how many plant species are visible on a particular verge. Once we know this, we can work out the best management techniques to help them into peak condition! This will often involve annual cutting and removal of clippings after the growing season, but might also involved techniques such a green haying or oversowing with local seed.
'Special verges' and special verges
There are 15 verges in the Biosphere Reserve that have previously been identified as 'special verges' which we will be re-surveying as part of the project, but we are looking to survey and bring into management far more than just this. We don't expect that all the verges we survey will contain a rare species or be completely amazing in terms of species richness, although naturally it would be fantastic if they do. With the help of volunteers, verges that aren't currently very diverse can be enhanced by management (click here for Plantife's Good Verge Guide) - with volunteers effectively aiming to create mini wildflower meadows. So whether it's species rich or simply a strip of rye grass, if there's a local verge you think should be part of the project, or you'd just like to get involved as an individual, please do get in contact on 07392 239719 or email email@example.com. Together we hope to discover many more verges that are special to you. ....
What's that wildflower?
This year, to kick start the projects verge survey programme we are running 5 FREE survey training events. If you live in the North Devon Biosphere Reserve there's likely to be one not far from where you live. We will help you to develop or improve your plant identification skills neccessary to complete our simple verge survey, So whether you already know your Herb Robert from your Ragged Robin, or you're an absolute beginner to plant identification, do get in touch.
Confirmed survey training dates:
Follow the project on social media, contact us on 07392 239719 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Project Co-ordinator appointed
The Life on the Verge Project- Biosphere has appointed local conservationist Clare Manning to work with communities on road verge management.
Clare Manning says, “there are some wonderfully rich and diverse road verges in this area and it is great to have this chance to help communities look after them for wildlife and for the benefit of local people and visitors. Life on the Verge - Biosphere has been supported by a £49,300 grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF). Thanks to National Lottery players, we have been able to help communities to manage roadside verges for wildlife”.