When I first started as a National Trust ranger on the Lizard almost 20 years ago, we would discuss with our colleagues at Natural England, Cornwall Wildlife Trust and our shared aspirations to extend the National Nature Reserve to include much of the NT, CWT and Cornwall Bird Watching and Preservation Society (CBWPS) land. Indeed, it was this aspiration which originally brought the ‘Linking the Lizard’ partnership together. Now, thanks to this partnership, that dream is now a reality and in 2016, the Lizard National Nature Reserve was extended by almost 500ha of wonderful coast, heath and farmland, land managed primarily for its incredible wealth of wildlife.
To celebrate this achievement, the partnership is a planning series of fun, exciting and educational events for the whole of May and June. Throughout the two months of celebration there are opportunities to track down elusive nightjars by their bizarre churring calls, peer into ponds to discover dragonfly nymphs and newts, join botanists to marvel at the glorious spring flowers carpeting the cliffs and get to know why the Lizard Peninsula is such an important place for wildlife and a mecca for naturalists.
The programme is open to everyone with events aimed at everyone from kids and families to those folk who wish to expand their existing knowledge of specific taxa or species. These opportunities to learn new skills can then be used to further our knowledge of Lizard wildlife on the NNR through future monitoring and surveys.
Most of these events will be led by volunteer expert naturalists, but representatives from the partner organisation will be attending each event, not only to answer questions on the new NNR, but also brush up on our own skills.
Look out for a full listing of the events on this website over the coming weeks, and do try and join us on one or more of these exciting events. I’ll be attending to brush up on my own, admittedly rusty, ID skills. See you there.
Published: April 2017
Author: Justin Whitehouse (Countryside Manager; Lizard and Penrose)