East Glamorgan, Cardiff and the Valleys

Coed y Bwl wild daffodil woods, near St. Brides Major, Glamorgan by Richard Marks

Coed y Bwl wild daffodil woods, near St. Brides Major by Richard Marks

We manage 11 nature reserves in east Glamorgan, Cardiff and the Valleys, including the beautiful reserve of Parc Slip, with its great cafe and easy to access areas as well as its hidden corners, which was once a coal mine. It has some fantastic historical features such as the Fountain, a memorial to a terrible mining disaster and we are working with a local heritage society tell more people about this aspect.

Taf Fechan Nature Reserve, near Merthyr Tydfil, is a magical and stunning nature reserve with its lime stone cliffs, wild river and verdant fern filled valleys.

Coed y Bwl in the gentle Vale of Glamorgan is a wild daffodil wood on a steep slope this gem of a reserve is well worth visiting in March when the whole floor is carpeted in yellow of Tenby and Welsh daffodils and studded with the white of wood anemones.

Latest East Glamorgan News

  • Woodland Management in the Vale of Glamorgan Coed Garnllwyd wood anemonesHabitat Piles and Spring Flowers Coed Garnllwyd in the Vale of Glamorgan is a 13ha nature reserve consisting of ancient broadleaved woodland and a meadow, situated less than 1km northeast of Llancarfan. It is underlain with limestone and contains species typical of calcareous woods such as Herb Paris and Early Purple Orchids as well as Bluebells, ...
  • Bridgend Snippets – Issue 4 Bridgend Snippets front coverHot off the press from our local Bridgend group; the slightly irreverent, always funny and  informative Bridgend Snippets Issue 4. From fungi to daffodils and even a bit of James Bond – there’s always something new and interesting in this local group’s newsletter. You can read on screen below by scrolling down the right hand side or you can ...
  • Some spring observations Early flowering Toothwort Taf Fechan by Graham WatkeysIt’s an odd year (you can say that again – the editor). The winter has been warm and wet there is no arguing with that, so warm in fact that many species are struggling to tell when in the year they are. Some species are very early, the Toothwort at ...
  • Nest boxes at Llyn Fach Some of the nest boxes installed at Llyn Fach - Graham WatkeysThe Biffa Award funded Llyn Fach home building scheme gets underway. We now offer a number of well-designed residences to meet every requirement however specialised. We know the right location is important, so great consideration has been taken to provide the right aspect for the modern avian family. We have also provided affordable over-day ...
  • More Moss Grey cushioned Grimmia (Grimmia pulvinata) by Graham WatkeysThis is Grimmia pulvinata; now with the tendency for the existence of hidden and, to my mind unnecessarily Delphic, cryptic species (two examples of a species look exactly identical in every way but are different), or various degrees of variability within a single species (two examples of a species look different but are exactly the ...
  • Meadow creation at Pwll Waun Cynon Mowing Pwll Waun Cynon (photo by Chris Lawrence)Eight people (and an imaginary dog, a Lurcher as it happens) went to mow, and after a day removing dense and encroaching bramble and scrub from one half of Pwll Waun Cynon, the general reaction was “Good lord it’s a field!!!” (or language to that effect). Actually thanks to a Biffa Award grant it’s now a ...
  • The Snail Brown-lipped Snail (Cepaea nemoralis) by Graham WatkeysAn embodiment of the golden ratio, a mathematical secret of the universe hidden in the turns of a shell; a horticultural horror, an armoured spiral, chewed leaves and silver trails reveal the single footed glider. A conqueror of the land coming from ancient seas needing only the sun gifted ghost of oceans and the shade of ...
  • Primary colonisers Bonfire Moss - Funaria hygrometrica Graham WatkeysAnother in the series of updates on interesting species recorded at Taf Fechan sees the inclusion of Bonfire moss AKA Common cord-moss as number 554 on my list. The Taf Fechan reserve is known as an important location for Bryophytes and is acknowledged as one of the best sites in Glamorgan for these small but fascinating ...
  • Frog Went A-Courting Frogs at Coed y Bwl Richard MarksFrogs are already on the march at Coed-y-Bwl Reserve – one jump ahead this year with masses of spawn appearing on January 27. Reserve volunteers have logged only one January record in the same ancient sheep pond alongside the wood – coincidentally on January 27, 2008 during a comparably mild period of westerly weather. At a time ...
  • Early Spring Flowers Record Breaker Coed y Bwl wild daffodil woods, near St. Brides Major by Richard MarksIt’s a record! The first wild daffodils were in bloom at Coed y Bwl reserve on January 25 – beating a long-standing early record by six days. Our mildest December since records began helped promote dormant bulbs at this wildwood gem in the Vale of Glamorgan. On the same day, nuthatches were spring-cleaning an old woodpecker hole in ...
  • Smutty Ferns A Fern Smut larva showing its characteristic brown head and green gut Graham WatkeysThis is about smut, but not the fungal kind of smut this time but the Mothy kind (reference previous article – Smut at Pwll Waun Cynon.) I’ve no idea why this particular group of Moths are called smuts but apparently they are. Maybe it’s one of these names that get applied ...
  • Parc Slip and The Welsh Wildlife Centre in the New Year Blackbird at Parc Slip by Vaughn MatthewsDust off your wellies this New Year and make a resolution you will enjoy keeping! Parc Slip’s Visitor Centre will be open as normal from New Years Day onwards, serving its delicious winter menu and a selection of hot beverages to keep you warm this season. Get stuck into a wild adventure to start your ...