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Welcome to the spring edition

 A primrose bank, surrey, credit author
The spring edition features articles discussing projects from around the UK. We also announce the ialeUK 2016 conference and student workshop. Several articles focus on cities including: one on bat urban ecology; SuDS and their multi-functionality and an open space strategy for pollinators and people. Two are located in Scotland and relate to work undertaken by the RSPB. The regular features include "The day in the life of a Landscape Ecologist" and we hear from a lecturer from the University of Greenwich. I hope you enjoy it and as always we are keen to hear any feedback or suggestions.

Editorial

As Spring approaches it is always good to have a bit of a clear-out. After much debate ialeUK has decided to put on a Spring sale and make available back issues of conference proceedings at a knock-down price...

Message From The Editor

I started an early draft of this editorial by commenting on the new e-newsletter, but the more observant among you will have spotted that although it arrived via e-mail it was not the format we had hoped. We tried (honestly) to get an e-version of the newsletter out for Summer as promised in earlier newsletters but work got in the way

Editorial

It has been a busy couple of months for those of us interested in things at a landscape scale. Not only have the Nature Improvement Areas been launched in England, but the ialeUK committee have been thinking long and hard about what we do and how we do it!

Editorial

As the conference season approaches in ialeUK we look forward to meeting up to discuss all matters landscape ecological (plus a few others no doubt). This year marks a few changes for us as some colleagues have decided to step down from the committee after years of sterling service.

Editorial

Hello and welcome to the Autumn edition of the ialeUK newsletter! This edition brings you feedback and thoughts on the excellent and lively conference, which was novel in its use of 5-minute flash presentations and interactive workshops.

Conference 2011 update

Conference 2011 update
We now have a full programme for this year’s conference to be held at the Telford campus of the University of Wolverhampton from 5th September 2011. The theme of landscape ecology and ecosystem services clearly struck a chord and as a result we have 32 oral presentations and 12 poster presentations scheduled...

ialeUK Conference 2012 Edinburgh

Preparations are in full swing for the 2012 conference Landscape Ecology: Linking Environment and Society, which will take place in Edinburgh 4-6 September. We received 75 abstracts from 25 countries and 5 continents, and the selection of the 24 oral, and 9 flash presentations has not been easy! We are now fine-tuning the programme, which will be online in the next few days.

Reflections on the iale 2013 European Congress from students awarded the Student Travel Conference Award (STCA)

In the second installment of a two part edition across the spring and summer newsletter we hear from students awarded the STCA about their experience of the conference, including particular symposiums they benefited from and enjoyed, as well as thoughts for the future.

Conference Proceedings

ialeUK publishes full conference proceedings. Price £22 (members), £33 (non-members).  For a full list and  details of how to order, please go to http://www.iale.org.uk/publications. Past proceedings are available on a wide range of topics:

ialeUK workshop: Engaging landscape ecology - stakeholder analysis and participatory methods

ialeUK organised a workshop for postgraduates in Reading in June. The workshop provided an opportunity to explore different techniques for interacting with stakeholders, and why and how their involvement can improve the impact of landscape research on planning and policy. Two participants give their view of the workshop.

Postgraduate Travel Awards

ialeUK’s Student Conference Travel Awards are open to all students registered at a UK university who are attending a Masters course or are undertaking a doctorate. In general, awards are designed to help people attend the ialeUK annual conference and research postgraduates to travel to other meetings, including iale meetings in other countries.

Postgraduate Workshop 2013

The upcoming workshop will be run on the 13th and 14th May 2013 and will provide an opportunity for those engaged in research at MSc & PhD level to explore the types of data which are available to them, and to be introduced to a range of statistical techniques commonly used when analysing landscape, cultural and ecological data.

Assessing the effectiveness of ELS in delivering resources for birds in arable landscapes

Current agri-environment schemes are central to meeting the Government’s target of reversing the decline in the ‘farmland bird index’ (based on population trends in 18 species) by 2020. The Entry Level Scheme (ELS), implemented in England in 2005, is a key delivery mechanism and it is therefore extremely important to...

Assessing the impact of the loss of set-aside stubbles on the winter ecology, behaviour and distribution of farmland birds and their breeding population trends

A wealth of evidence suggests that set-aside has had benefits for farmland biodiversity, particularly birds, for which it can provide valuable foraging habitat in summer and winter, as well as breeding habitat for some ground-nesting species. A review of recent studies suggests that, on average, set-aside can support...

PhD workshop: Integrating scientific research and policy with spatial data

In total, 9 PhD students from various parts of the UK (Warwick, Sheffield, London, and Reading), Ireland (Dublin), and even The Netherlands (Wageningen and Amsterdam) came to the University of Reading to explore how research can best inform policy and practice and some of the key issues relating to spatial data and GIS applications.

Reflections on the iale 2013 European Congress from students awarded the Student Travel Conference Award (STCA)

In a two part edition across the spring and summer newsletter we hear from students awarded the STCA about their experience of the conference, including particular symposiums they benefited from and enjoyed, as well as thoughts for the future.

Increasing fragmentation of landscape threatens European wildlife

Roads, motorways, railways, intensive agriculture and urban developments are breaking up Europe’s landscapes into ever-smaller pieces, with potentially devastating consequences for flora and fauna across the continent, according to a new joint report from the European Environment Agency (EEA) and the Swiss Federal Office for the Environment (FOEN).

25 years of ialeUK - past, present and future

A flooded town in Oxfordshire (Credit: Photo: Sergeant (Sgt) Mitch Moore./MOD [OGL (http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/doc/open-government-licence/version/1/)], via Wikimedia Commons)
Welcome to our autumn newsletter. We have an excellent collection of articles, eighteen in total covering ialeUK news and wide-ranging insights into landscape ecology from the UK, Canada, Ireland and the United States. As part of our 25th Anniversary, we also want to hear from you. We want to understand what you think of landscape ecology: how far the discipline has come, the value of what we are doing now and the role we need to take in the future.

Ecosystems Knowledge Network: connecting people and nature

A healthy natural environment is the foundation of a sustainable future with prospering communities. In the UK and elsewhere, pioneering projects are exploring new ways of managing land and sea environments and the benefits people derive from them.A new network has been sponsored by Defra with the aim of sharing experience from projects taking an ecosystems approach.

Measuring connectivity and spatial planning: some highlights from the 25th International Congress for Conservation Biology

Measuring connectivity and spatial planning
The 25th International Congress for Conservation Biology was held in Auckland, New Zealand, from the 5th to the 9th of December.  I imagine I was probably the only ialeUK member to attend (having the advantage of currently being a local) but there was so much useful stuff that was of relevance to landscape ecology...

Ecology: Into the next 100 years, 18 – 23 August 2013, London, UK

The BES is inviting the world’s ecologists to London in 2013 to celebrate our centenary and look towards the future of our science.  This major international ecological congress combines the BES Annual Meeting with the 11th INTECOL Congress.  The call for symposia will be open in March 2011 at the same time as a number of plenary speakers will be announced.

A tale of two conferences

a wordle of the article (Credit: Author)
Late in June 2017 and within the space of a week, Manchester Metropolitan University saw two established landscape associations concern themselves with the state of UK landscapes. Leon, founder-director of Viridian Logic, who previously earned a PhD in extragalactic astrophysics in 2015 provides a valuable insight.

Conference: RegioResources 2011

Regions are spatial key units for the sustainable management of natural and human resources. Major challenges in regional resource management (RRM) will be (i) globalization, (ii) demographic change and migration, (iii) climate change, (iv) sustainable provision of energy from various sources and (v) conservation of natural resources and ecosystem services as cross-cutting issue...

Forests could reduce flooding

Researchers for the Forestry Commission Wales say flood risk could be reduced using the nation's forests. The climate change project FUTUREforest, run by Forestry Commission Wales, is experimenting with new ways in which the nation's forests can help reduce downstream flooding, as well as locking away millions of tons of carbon dioxide...

Editorial

Spring always seems to end up being the busiest time of the year. Not only are there many things to finish at the end of the academic/financial year but it is the season of new activities and possibilities as we look forward to the summer. This year...

Sign the Tree Charter and stand up for British trees and woodland

Sign the Tree charter
The Woodland Trust along with 70 organisations are looking to the British public to sign the Charter for trees, woods and people. Some 800 years after the original Forest Charter of 1217. The new charter will guide policy and practice through the power of the people. Read on to find out more and to sign up to become part of the momentous occasion this November.

The Tool Assessor - Compare the market for methods in ecosystem services

Ecosystem Service: Valuing nature's services, understanding how nature works and involving people (Credit: JNCC)
If you were buying a car, you would compare the market for the car that suits your needs. Well, the same now can be done for ecosystem service approaches. The Tool Assessor, run by the Ecosystems Knowledge Network should be the first port of call, providing time-saving information on the right tool for the job. This article provides a summary of the main features of the website and relevant links.

ialeUK student workshop 2016

The topic of the 2016 student workshop is "Mapping the lived environment - participatory GIS for landscape and seascape". It will be held over two days from the 18th - 19th May in Edinburgh and is open to all students who are interested in, or already using participatory GIS methods in their research. It will provide an opportunity for students to explore a range of techniques for producing and using GIS with people. More information below and how to sign up.

ialeUK Annual Review 2015-2016 & committee nominations

committee nominations
The ialeUK Annual Review will be held on Wednesday 7th September 2016 during the ialeUK annual conference, this year being held at the University of Reading. The Annual Review will follow-on from the plenaries and symposia to be held on the day and is open to all current members of ialeUK. Find out what we have been doing over the year, meet the committee, provide feed back or more information on how to get involved.

Chance to win new book on urban landscape ecology

New book on urban landscape ecology
ialeUK Members have a chance to win a copy of a new book on Urban Landscape Ecology, edited by ialeUK and featuring many topics discussed at the ialeUK 2014 conference. The book provides a much needed summary of current thinking on how urban landscapes can provide the foundation of sustained economic growth, prospering communities and personal well-being. Read on to find out what the competition requires.

A dataset of landscape features

field patterns near Brendon, Devon (Credit: Chris McAuley, via geograph.com)
In recent months, Ordnance Survey (OS) have published an interesting array of new datasets. In this article the OS provide a detailed look into the tools and capabilities that enable their them to deliver high quality datasets for bespoke applications. Project examples include the hedgerow dataset for the Rural Payments Agency and the single habitats layer for Natural England.

The importance of systems thinking in achieving a future vision for cities

Network Science Reading Group, Creative Commons (C)
When the question "What do you think the focus should be to deliver a sustainable London? was raised at Green Sky Thinking event, organised by Temple Group, early this year - the results were quite intriguing: Cycling infrastructure received 5.6%, green infrastructure received 22.2%, air quality received 27.8% and systems thinking received 44.4%. But what is Systems Thinking you might be asking? Nick Voulvoulis, a reader in Environmental Technology at Imperial College, who presented that morning provides useful insight.

SEC4 - spatial ecology and conservation conference: part 1

Gannets, ERT
The 4th ERT Spatial Ecology and Conservation Conference (SEC4) was held on the 12th – 14th July at the University of Bristol. Delegates from across the world gathered to present their work and to discuss the latest developments in all-things related to spatial ecology, conservation, policy and practice. ialeUK member, Jessica Neumann provides a synopsis of the event. With a wealth of information shared during the 3 day event, summary of key information on Symposia 1-4 is provided in this edition and Symposia 5 in the Autumn edition. Please read on.

The Land Bases Colleges National Consortium (LBCNC)

Colleagues may be interested to know about the Land Bases Colleges National Consortium (LBCNC).The Land Based Colleges National Consortium is a group of 28 colleges in England, Scotland and the Republic of Ireland who collaborate over the development of high quality learning resources to support effective and innovative teaching and learning in the land-based sector.

Greening the grey: Does urban green space cater for societal well-being and biodiversity?

Gloucester City Open Spaces Map, credit Jackie Jobes, Gloucester City Council
Keeping research straightforward and easy to replicate is critical if local authorities are to implement and replicate new methods of assessment for green infrastructure and ecosystem services. If there are ways to maximise benefit by combing two priorities into one study then this is likely to be particularly useful. So the question is, is it possible to deliver a city wide campaign for both access to nature and spaces for nature? Jackie Jobes, Master’s student at Oxford Brooks University tells us about the methodology behind her research for Gloucester City Council.

What works in conservation?

Research on the value of plants to pollinators has increased in recent years. Credit: Author
What works in conservation is an important question to practitioners and policy makers. For a long time many commonly undertaken conservation interventions are done with very little evidence. This is sometimes the case because "it is the way they have always been done". If you are involved in implementing conservation actions, this article and accompanying links are very much focused at helping you.

Basement developments - An underground problem?

Building down into the basement is seen by many property developments and home owners as a potentially lucrative and sensible option in space deprived areas of London. But is there potential for enviromental damage? Some London Borough's are concerned about tree roots but what about other natural systems buried below-ground? We hear from a Landscape Architect with personal experience......

City frogs: Understanding the value of sustainable drainage

ASDA's SuDS, Inverness, Credit: author
Are SuDS maximising ecosystem benefits in cities? Scottish Natural Heritage, The Highland Council and Salford University hope to answer that question in a long-term research study, the first of its kind in Scotland, to determine if SuDS ponds in Inverness are, in practice, providing these multiple benefits. Marcie Rae, from the Highland Council provides ialeUK with some initial results.

Biodiversity offsetting: better for nature

small pearl bordered fritillary (credit: Author)
Biodiversity offsetting is controversial. People suspect developers of trying to buy their way out of conservation requirements by compensating for biodiversity losses somewhere else. But the framework for offsetting provides several advantages that current wildlife legalisation doesn’t offer, and we desperately need these if we’re to reach our UK target of halting biodiversity loss by 2020. This article provides a consultant ecologists' view on the benefits of the scheme.

‘Beetles in Time and Space’: Beetle community ecology informing landscape conservation and design

Swollen-thighed beetle (Oedemera nobilis)
We know that invertebrates are important indicators of environmental change; however, the current taxonomic scope of landscape research remains fairly small and the response of various taxa to landscape factors is heterogeneous. Chris Foster provides an overview of his research to date which aims to provide useful new evidence to inform landscape planning and design for invertebrates.

Editorial

As summer nears an end we enter the ialeUK conference season – and just a quick look at any conference listings will demonstrate the value of a good quality conference topic to help you stand out from the crowd.

Editorial

Welcome to the first e-newsletter of ialeUK. We are hoping that this along with our other innovations will make the website much more of a centre for ialeUK activity and idea-sharing.

Greater London’s bat landscape

Noctule bat at a London Bat Group bat box check in South London Credit: Author
It’s surprising how little we know about some basic aspects of bat ecology in towns and cities. For example, how do bats move about the urban landscape? How are different bat species affected by different configurations of grey and green habitat? Bats are thought to be a general indicator for the ‘health’ of the natural environment too. Richard Gowing, from the London Bat Group discusses the lesser known aspects of bat urban ecology.

We all need to be data aware

Adder, South Downs National Park, Credit: author
Across the UK, there is currently a vast amount of wildlife data that is not being shared. A large proportion of this data is been held within the private sector, but what are the barriers preventing its release? This article presents the current situation and calls to action from everyone involved in the industry: from construction professionals, planning authorities to university graduates.