Hi everyone, my name’s Beth and I will be taking over from Laura as the Local Wildlife Sites Officer with the Wildlife Trust of South & West Wales, based at the Nature Centre in Tondu.
My first experience with the Trust was when I was just 15, during an exciting week-long GCSE work experience placement at Parc Slip Nature Reserve. Since then, I have gone on to complete a BSC International Wildlife Biology degree and have now been volunteering with the Trust at the Nature Centre for nearly three years, helping out with a range of different things including practical conservation work, species surveying and monitoring, and lending a hand at public events.
As well as volunteering, I have had various jobs within the environment sector. After leaving university I was fortunate enough to be accepted as a Nature Reserve Trainee with Gwent Wildlife Trust, based at the Environmental Resource Centre in Ebbw Vale. I then moved on to work for the Swansea Ecology Research Team at Swansea University, where I undertook a project which looked at the presence/absence of bird species and human disturbance at an amenity grassland site opposite Swansea Bay’s Blackpill SSSI. Most recently, I was employed as a Seasonal Ranger at Bryngarw Country Park in Bridgend. This was a very varied and hugely enjoyable post; I was able to gain experience in everything from practical park management to environmental education, species surveying to organising and running events.
Now, at the Wildlife Trust of South and West Wales, I will be continuing the fantastic progress already made on the Local Wildlife Sites Project; ensuring local landowners are aware that they have some of the most important sites for wildlife in the area and encouraging them to manage their lovely pieces of land favourably, in order to maintain and/or start creating wonderful havens for wildlife across south east Wales.