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.

Everyone taking part will receive brief introductory or refresher training appropriate to their skill levels. The real training happens in the field. You will spend two or three days in a mixed ability group surveying permanent quadrats, identifying every plant you find. All the data is fed into our understanding of long term environmental change and is an extremely valuable component of our monitoring work. It's also a huge amount of fun... and will help contribute to climate change science, scrub up those rusty ID skills not used for a while and learn new plant species.

You will need to be able to commit to at least 2 days. In order to take part we ask that everyone attend the training day on Tuesday 20 June, and come along to at least one of the survey days of the 21, 22, 23. We do need a firm commitment beforehand so as to ensure that we can organise survey teams with complementing skills. In return for your skills and time we hope you may learn a little or a lot, have an enjoyable time and contribute to our science base.

By volunteering you will be contributing to the LTMN vegetation dataset, collected since 2011 using the (ECN: http://www.ecn.ac.uk/) Course Grain Vegetation protocol, which uses 2m x 2m quadrats, with each plot divided into 25 cells of 40cm x 40cm to record all the plant species present in each cell.
Here is a link to the LTMN Open Data via data.gov (metadata) and Access to Evidence Catalogue to LTMN Vegetation data 2011 to 2015 .
• Data.gov LTMN Soil Metadata
• LTMN Vegetation Survey Data: Access to Evidence Catalogue

In order to apply please fill in the attached spreadsheet and send to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. by Friday 31st March 2017. If you have any queries please ring 01326 240808. We had a great time in 2013, and we were oversubscribed with offers of help – surely it can't be spoilt by howling gales and rain in 2017!!?

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Published: Mar 2017
Author: Steve Townsend (Reserve Manager, Lizard National Nature Reserve)