We wish Emily Foot good luck with her new adventure!
As I leave the Trust, I thought I’d write about some of the highlights from my time as Ceredigion’s Wildlife Trust Officer.
Please remember as you read this, that without all your help and support, as colleagues, members, supporters and volunteers, this would not have been possible- so thank you from me and the beautiful nature reserves (and no, I don’t have a favourite)!
I will start with the opportunity to move to Faberystwyth and Wonderful West Wales!
Having my office as some of the loveliest places in the county.
Meeting and working with fantastic, friendly, dedicated people.
From the small snowdrops and scarlet elf cups to the autumn beech cathedral at Penglanowen.
The views from Penderi and the gnarly, twisted oak trees within.
Looking up into the sea of pink heather at Coed Simdde; feasting on the bilberries!
The purple hue of scabious in a good year at Glyn yr Helyg.
The bluebells at Old Warren Hill and Coed Penglanowen.
Installing the bridge and new paths at Cwm Clettwr.
Seeing cute dormice every month throughout the summer and knowing there is a good population.
The huge increase in the number of marsh fritillary webs at Rhos Glyn yr Helyg, new records at Rhos Glandenys and reappearance at Rhos Fullbrook.
The renovated stable block and entrance at Cors Ian.
The sea of foxgloves and the view out across the county. Seeing small oak trees growing in the green lane.
Completing the woodland path in the welly-high mud at Coed Maidie. Building, re-building and moving the bridges at Coed Maidie.
Installing the waymarkers; the brown hairstreak egg, the new oak woodland, the violet bank and the orchid patch.
Partnership working: rustic structures at Coed Penglanowen; signs, seats and paths at Coed Simdde; new ponds at Pil Bach and Coed Maidie; renovated shelter at Maidie B; information boards at Cletwr; uncut roadside verges, and the “Rhydyfelin orchid”, due to the white post scheme; watervole dams at Rhos Fullbrook; hemlock clearance at Cwm Clettwr.
Taking on Rhos Marion with its laburnum hedges and wildflowers. Then finding marsh frits.
Seeing volunteers go on to get careers.
Miles of fencing!
The view of the Rheidol Valley when you finally get to the top of Coed Simdde, with the red kites soaring below you!
Freeing heather, young oak trees and other plants from the bracken.
Fluffy gull chicks amongst the bluebells on Cardigan Island.
Pil Bach entrance track in the spring; Llety Cybi meadows in summer, with the delicate greater butterfly orchids.
The dedication and perseverance of the volunteers, especially on cold, wet, bramble clearing days!
Completing the coupe fells at Coed Simdde and Pant Da- steep is not the word!
Also at Cwm Clettwr and Coed Maidie- seeing all the butterflies and the new growth.
Updating the reserve species records, having extra surveys done and producing tick lists, encouraging more people to report what they see. Designing new leaflets for the reserves.
Gaining the extra ditch at Rhos Fullbrook and extending the boardwalk for access- so much mud!
Many, many steps rebuilt including the very substantial sleeper entrance steps at Coed Peng.
The cotton grass fields at Rhos Pil Bach; the wildness of Pennar Fawr.
Walking along the tumbling river at Cwm Clettwr.
Introducing tree-poppers- though the volunteers may disagree! And the discovery of super-loppers!
Seeing adult marsh frits; regularly finding signs of otters and occasionally of watervoles; hearing the cuckoos, the flocks of long tailed tits, and the chough; the smell of gorse in the sunshine; the barn owl floating overhead and hiding in the nest box; bats, adders, slowworms, badgers; tawny owls standing guard in the stables; frogs, toads and newts in the ponds with dragonflies racing by overhead or perching; lizards scurrying away or hiding in our coats; glistening, misty cobwebs in autumn; kestrels hovering, peregrines zooming passed, seals basking and bottling, dolphins; wrens, robins and ravens; drumming woodpeckers, pied flycatchers, tiny violets, giant oak trees; moths of all colours, shapes, sizes and patterns; and much more...
Getting the water trough and tank installed at Rhos Glyn yr Helyg; the reduction in balsam, though not the actual days of pulling!
Seeing our strimmed tracks on Googlemaps and finding plants other than molinia growing in them- knowing the hard work was worth it!
Seeing young heather growing where we cleared birch at Allt Crug Garn.
Seeing a difference.
Getting all this done on a bailer twine budget!
Thank you for taking a chance on me and my multi-coloured umbrella!
Everyone at WTSWW would like to take this opportunity to say a big thank you to Em for all her hardwork and support over the last 12 1/2 years! We'd also like to wish her all the very best for the next chapter.