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.
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...
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
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!
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.
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.
The programme for the annual meeting has now been finalised and we hope to open registration very soon (by end of May 2010). Keep an eye on the ialeUK conference website (www.iale.org.uk/conference 2010) over the next couple of weeks to guarantee your place and take advantage of the early bird registration discount.
A reminder to all that the Call For Papers for this year's ialeUK conference is now open.This international conference will be very much of the moment. There is growing recognition of the importance of ecosystem services...
When deciding to leave the UK rather suddenly a year ago to start work on invasive species in New Zealand, without the time to do some proper background research, I left with the assumption that there would be a plethora of landscape ecologists in New Zealand with which to engage...
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...
A widespread and general loss of natural or semi-natural habitat has occurred throughout England over the past 100 years, intensifying since the 1940’s, resulting in fragmentation and loss of biodiversity. In order to redress some of these losses...
The East Cambridgeshire Planting Parishes woodland creation scheme aims to provide the expertise and guidance for local communities to participate in the long-term management of their local environment.
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.
All ialeUK members are encouraged to consider joining the committee to assist with development and administration of the organisation. The entire committee is elected each year at the AGM in September.
The upcoming workshop 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 techniques commonly used when analysing landscape, cultural and ecological data.
ialeUK and IALE-Europe invite all colleagues to Manchester for the IALE 2013 European Congress. This major international event will examine how and why European landscapes are changing and how landscape ecology can help us to plan for the future at local to global scales.
This year in early September the ialeUK Annual Conference heads to London. Hosted by Dr James Millington and others at King’s College London, the theme of this year’s conference is ‘Urban landscape ecology: science, policy and practice’.
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.
The latest news about the 2015 ialeUK Conference: Seascape ecology - connecting land, sea and society including an update on the keynote speakers, participants and the opportunity to submit a general landscape ecology poster.
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:
The Irish Programme for Government (2007) includes a commitment to deliver a National Landscape Strategy (NLS). The process is now in a draft stage and the final NLS will be published in 2011 and its duration will extend to 2020. Finally landscape has made its way to the political agenda...
ialeUK and IALE Europe invite you to Manchester for the IALE 2013 European Congress. This major international event will examine how and why European landscapes are changing and how landscape ecology can help us to plan for the future at local to global scales. The event will run from 9-12 September 2013 in Manchester.
The ialeUK conference Landscape Ecology: linking environment and society is rapidly approaching so a reminder to all that we hope to see as many members as possible at the 2012 conference in Edinburgh.
The 19th ialeUK conference “Landscape Ecology: linking environment and society” successfully brought together academics, practicioners, and policy makers from a diverse range of countries and continents to consider the use of landscape ecology to balance our demands upon the environment.
This article contains a summary of the wide selection of symposia at the IALE 2013 European Congress in Manchester. Symposia will range in length from 100-300 minutes. Posters can also be submitted for each symposium.
Natural landscapes, such as lakes and forests, which also have high ecosystem service values were measured as both aesthetically and ecologically important compared to human dominated or modified landscapes.
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.
Jonathan Porter, ialeUK President, gave a summary presentation at the end of the 2015 conference, reflecting on the breadth of perspectives and ideas discussed, definitions of seascape and opportunities for research and communication.
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.
Environment secretary Caroline Spelman has revealed that the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) is to invest £110m in overhauling England's rivers. The funding is to be used to...
The Environment Agency is supporting a new trading scheme that will pay farmers to convert their land into a threatened coastal habitat.Use of conservation credits in the UK has come a step closer, with the Environment Agency entering into an agreement with the Environment Bank, a small company set up to promote the concept four years ago.
With landscape-scale thinking and landscape ecology now centre-stage at the science-policy interface, I suggested at an ialeUK committee meeting earlier this year that it would be good to think through what more we might do to achieve our core aims (http://iale.org.uk/mission)...
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.
The ialeUK conference on seascape ecology, not only connected land, sea and society but also connected fellow researchers and practitioners within different fields. In this case, we hear from two PhD students explain the importance of seagrass meadows as carbon sinks and find out about their own research.
What do you do and what do you know? Are You Going To the World Congress in Beijing? Scottish Environment Protection Agency Position Statement. Scottish Biodiversity Conference. IaleUK Conference 2011: Provisional dates & Venue
Buckinghamshire County Council in partnership with Milton Keynes Council, Natural England and BMERC has produced a habitat map covering all of rural Buckinghamshire and Milton Keynes. The project has now completed its main phase and a report detailing the progress, methodology and analysis of findings is now available.
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...
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...
The Woodland Trust Scotland has recently completed the purchase of Maryland Farm a 240 hectare (600 acre) site, the first step towards creating the largest new native woodland on Glasgow’s doorstep at Lang Craigs.
Populations of organisms that live on the bottom of an aquatic ecosystem, the benthic community, can be assessed to determine the health of the ecosystem. New research explores the many existing methods for assessing benthic communities to ensure that the most appropriate and useful tests are used under the Water Framework Directive (WFD).
Anyone managing or restoring floodplain meadows may be interested to make contact with the Floodplain Meadows Partnership. This project, hosted by the Open University, aims to share the latest research on rare species rich floodplain meadows in order to help with the conservation of existing sites and encourage restoration.
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.
A second group of conference delegates embarked upon a rigorous tour of the Carrifran wildwood site, an extraordinary exemplar of forest restoration and public engagement, overcoming conflicting conservation agendas.
The Ecosystems Knowledge Network is a resource for anyone who wants to learn, or share their knowledge, about the practical benefits of taking an ecosystems approach to land and marine management. The Network runs free workshops, field trips and webinars for its members.
UK nature is in trouble – that is the conclusion of a groundbreaking report published in late May by a coalition of 25 wildlife organisations, who together have compiled a stock take of our native species.
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.
Jessica Neuman, an ialeUK committee member, recently published a paper in Landscape Ecology. We bring the essence of her paper a succint article to bring research to decision makers - in as little time as possible.
A new conference focusing on urban green infrastructure is to be held in Vienna between the 23rd-25th November. ialeUK is endorsing the conference and members have the opportunity to win a free ticket.
Dusty Gedge, a green infrastructure expert, introduces the concept of biosolar - combining solar panels with biodiverse habitats on roofs. A technique that is common place in Europe but slow to be understood in the UK. He discusses projects in Europe and the vision behind the 1st Biosolar Conference, held in London this year.
This October, Spaces Wild was published by the London Wildlife Trust (LWT). It's been produced to help decision makers recognise the importance of green and wild spaces in London and what action is needed to ensure they are protected. Gemma Hallam, Senior Planning Policy Officer at LWT and co-author of the report, provides a taster of what's included.
The paper, published in the avian science journal IBIS, reports on work looking at the number of wintering birds feeding on fields planted with plots of wild bird seed mix. In East Anglia, the research found that there were a significantly greater number and range of ...
Forest Research has launched a website to promote the importance of green infrastructure. It was launched on behalf of the Urban Regeneration & Greenspace Partnership, which promotes greenspace initiatives and best practice. Users can...
For anyone with any interest in conservation in the UK, the publication of the Lawton Review is a must-read. It covers the current state of England's protected areas and investigates to what extent they provide a coherent ecological network...
Demand for land in Europe is high. Food and biomass production, housing, infrastructure and recreation all compete for space, with impacts on our climate, biodiversity and ecosystem services. In a recent assessment, the European Environment Agency (EEA) analysed land use change in Europe, concluding that we need an integrated policy approach...
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).
The London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games have been hailed as the most sustainable ever. Reports recently published by Natural England and its partners describe the role of Green Infrastructure in achieving this Olympic legacy.
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.
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.
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...
You are kindly invited to submit a proposal for a symposium or a training course to the 2011 IALE World Congress (Beijing: August 18-23). All presenters are invited by the symposium organizer, but the conference organizer has the opportunity to fill in contributed oral presentations into related symposiums at “empty” time slots.
As the goverment plans to sell England's publicly owned forests attract increasing publicity, industry analysts predict much of the forest could be snapped up by energy companies looking to burn wood as a biofuel...
An ambitious new partnership approach for delivering landscape-scale conservation was launched by RSPB Scotland on 23rd September. Designed to help halt biodiversity loss and create more space for wildlife, Futurescapes will see RSPB Scotland working in partnership with others to create whole landscapes...
A 12-week consultation on a proposal to extend the Clwydian Range Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) started on 4th October 2010. The Countryside Council for Wales (CCW), in partnership with the local authorities of Denbighshire and Wrexham, wants to extend the existing area...
The Cairngorms national park became a fifth bigger following the inclusion of Highland Perthshire within its boundaries as if 4th October. The Cairngorms national park, previously 3,800 square kilometres, now covers 4,528 square kilometres and is twice the size of...
Colleagues may not be aware of the existence of SDRN This is a Defra and DfT-funded initiative which seeks to facilitate evidence-based sustainable development policy.The Network offers policy-makers opportunities to access the sustainable development research community, through...
Seven methods of sampling vegetation were examined in detail, all based on surveying 1km squares. From these, three design options are recommended for subsequent field-testing. Recommendations are made regarding...
A new woodland creation scheme has been launched to help fulfil the commitment to create more native and mixed woodland as set out in Woodlands for Wales, the Welsh Assembly Government's woodland strategy. The bespoke element of Glastir, Wales’s new sustainable land management scheme, offers grants to landowners to create new woodlands on their land.
Around 374,000ha of land overseen by the Forestry Commission is set to be sold off, environment secretary Caroline Spelman is expected to announce shortly. The move comes as DEFRA endures one of the severest cuts endured in Whitehall, with its total budget cut by 30 per cent in the comprehensive spending review.
A detailed study by Oxford University's Environment Bank, published on 14 October suggests that England is losing a species to extinction as often as once every two weeks. The report goes on to suggest that...
Abstracts are invited for the 26th US-IALE Annual Symposium, due to take place from 3rd to 7th April 2011, in Portland, Oregon. Landscape ecology investigates the causes and consequences of environmental heterogeneity across numerous scales.
November 2010 – March 2011: University of Gloucestershire. The Sustainable Landscape Seminar Series, sponsored by Arup Landscape and Landscape Institute South West, is a free public lecture series exploring issues of sustainability, sustainable development and sustainable living.
Ireland has started to value the contribution that natural eco-systems make to the wellbeing of our population, economy and environment. However, according to Comhar Sustainable Development Council (SDC), in order to maximise this contribution, we need to move to a system where the protection and enhancement of our green infrastructure is integrated into the planning process. ..
The Natural History Museum UK-wide census encourages the public to submit survey data on urban trees via its website to try and identify and map where every urban tree is. To find out more and to take part visit http://www.nhm.ac.uk/nature-online/british-natural-history/urban-tree-survey/
Cheshire's first breeding record of Marsh Harrier was announced recently, at a secret location in the Gowy & Mersey Washlands, south of the Mersey estuary. The news of the successful breeding was kept under wraps to ensure they were not disturbed during the nesting season.
Funding awarded to 17 projects across Scotland's central belt has started the process that will deliver the single, biggest greenspace development in Europe. The projects will share £362,731 of funding from the Central Scotland Green Network (CSGN) Development Fund...
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.
The JNCC have recently completed an assessment of the state of UK peatlands. The report provides estimates of extent and condition of peatlands in each of the four UK countries. There is little consistent UK-wide information on peatlands (maps or statistics) as...
Two short surveys are being conducted by the UNEP World Conservation Monitoring Centre (UNEP-WCMC) and AEA for a project on developing UK indicators for the Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011-2020. The surveys take 10-15 minutes to complete and deadline for submission is 7 June 2012.
The Environment Agency is warning that September is the peak growing season for problem plants known as ‘invasive non-native species’. People who are out and about can help track them down using an App called ‘PlantTracker’.
The recent article by Kimberely et al., (2013) investigates whether Ancient Woodland Indicator Species, often identified from subjective experience, have traits in common, and determine how distinct their trait profile is from that of other woodland plant species.
Wildlife habitats in Cities are inherently fragmented, separated by busy roads, the concrete jungle, 24-7 disturbance and artifical lighting. This article looks at three perspectives on identifying and enhancing the city matrix for wildlife and people.
A conference on future visions of landscapes, called Wild Thing: Managing Landscape Change and Future Ecologies was held this September in Sheffield. Dr. Ian Rotherham, director of the Biodiversity and Landscape History Research Institute (BaLHRI) provides the highlights of the three day event and details of the next conference in June 2016.
It has been two years since the last Terrestrial Biodiversity Climate Change Impact Report Card and we now know even more about the effects that a changing climate will have on biodiversity. This article introduces the latest updates from the new report.
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.
Don't miss out on an ialeUK member discount to attend this European conference on urban green infrastructure: celebrating nature-based solutions for cities. The 2-day conference is to be held in Budapest 29-30th November 2017.
In Winter 2010 I looked at the top 10 returned websites on Google for Landscape ecology. As with any top 10 these change frequently, so it is good to see the current top 10. ialeUK is still as popular as ever coming in at no.7 – the only international chapter in the top 10!
One-fifth of the world's mammals, birds, amphibians, reptiles and fish are threatened with extinction, according to a recent report. The study notes that there have been many conservation success stories, but far greater long-term resources are needed...
The last decade has been the best for rivers since the industrial revolution, the Environment Agency said today.The Environment Agency has highlighted dramatic environmental and water quality improvements and the resulting recovery in species...
Scotland's Marine Atlas, launched in March, must help protect areas important for wildlife, says RSPB Scotland. The Atlas features maps and information about Scotland's waters to inform planning decisions at sea.
A selection of thought-provoking TED talks that use impressive visualisations to illustrate spatial patterns in data. Topics include social diversity, infographics, big data, media networks, the pattern of war, happy maps and the Dublin bus map.
Landscape ecology has emerged as an integrative framework for large scale biodiversity and conservation planning as it offers a set of principles and a common language that has the potential to link policy with practice.
More than a quarter of the UK's rare species have been discovered by a large scale biodiversity study of farmland on the Norfolk/Suffolk border.The University of East Anglia said its Breckland study revealed a "nationally important biodiversity hot-spot". A huge variety of species were identified, from the smallest gnat to birds, plants and mammals...
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...
CIWEM (The Chartered Institution of Water and Environmental Management) has formally established a Natural Capital Network (NCN) in support of professionals working to protect the resources, sinks and services that are provided by the natural environment.
Recently, I attended the 4th ESP (Ecosystem Services Partnership) Conference, 04-07 October 2011 in Wageningen, the Netherlands, where I presented my research paper entitled, ‘Crop evapo-transpiration services – is it a major hydrological ecosystem services?’
In the 60 years of Queen Elizabeth II’s reign, mammal populations in Britain have undergone many changes. While some furry royal subjects such as rabbits and foxes have grown in numbers over the decades, other iconic native species such as the red squirrel and hedgehogs have suffered a dramatic decline.
Natural England are in the process of refreshing the NCA profiles, to provide the best available information to a wider audience. These profiles are intended to help achieve a more sustainable future for individuals and communities.
A family reunion without Uncle Walt! And a knowledge exchange conference where people are willing to learn and share ideas. These were some of the ways land manager Sarah Blyth describes her first experience at an ialeUK conference.
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...
The Joint Research Centre’s Land Management and Natural Hazards Unit (H07) has just completed a comprehensive collaborative project focusing exclusively on life in the soil. One of the resulting outputs is the first ever European Atlas of Soil Biodiversity. The atlas is a visually stunning publication...
The ialeUK website now includes an events diary holding details of forthcoming landscape ecology events. If you are organising an event related to landscape ecology, you can request a free listing by sending an emailing us.
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...
Recent research published by greenspace scotland, in partnership with Scottish Natural Heritage, shows that every pound invested in activities on urban nature sites returned between £3 and £20 in community benefits.
An important milestone has been achieved in the English Heritage 'Hoo Peninsula Historic Landscape Project', designed to substantially increase understanding of the Hoo Peninsula's historic landscape and enable better informed inputs to the future changes envisaged for this part of the Thames Estuary.
The UK National Ecosystem Assessment increased our understanding of the state and future of ecosystem service delivery, and identified key uncertainties and scientific evidence gaps. The Follow-On Phase, which commenced earlier this year, attempts to bridge this knowledge gap, whilst further developing and communicating the evidence base.
Just published - England's first 12 Nature Improvement Areas (NIAs), are put to the test on their success, challanges and lessons learnt in a recently published 2nd year report on the scheme. Take a read of the main highlights:
Cities are a bit like marmite - you either love them or hate them. Wildlife are having a similar response. In this article, we hear from an ecologist who used landscape ecological techniques to understand why flying foxes are increasing in Australian cities.
Latest editions of Landscape Ecology are now available: Volume 25, Number 8 / October 2010 (Special edition: Landscape ecology as an integrated science for sustainability in a changing world), Volume 25 Number 9 / November 2010, Volume 25, Number 10 / December 2010.
As the UN International Decade for Biodiversity begins, the need to maintain and restore our natural life support system is greater than ever.Integrated habitat design ensures that development maintains the health of the natural systems that we all depend on. CIRIA is continuing to support and help judge the competition now in its second year.
During the Florence Meeting 2011 a new President was elected by the General Assembly. Dr Inge Gotzmann is following Mr Gerrit-Jan van Herwaarden after she was elected unanimously by the member delegates.
London’s first Amphibian and Reptile Atlas underlines the need for more information on the whereabouts of London’s species and the vital role of the public in helping to secure a future for these threatened species.
Tick populations are growing rapidly in the UK and as a result, so are the number of cases of tick-borne diseases. The chance of being infected is very small, but it is not impossible, so here is a bit of information on what to look out for.
How does the urban environment affect mental wellbeing? A group of scientists and urban designers have created a mobile phone application to enable individuals across multiple cities to record their experience in real-time.
On the subject of National Parks, a grass-roots movement to create the first National Park City is gaining popularity in London. Benjamin Brace, a landscape architect working in London gives his views on this radical idea.
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.
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.
The Grasslands Trust recently launched our first in depth report into the state of England's grasslands. Nature's Tapestry examines the reasons why our wildlife-rich grasslands are so significant and need to be valued; not just for biodiversity and the broader environment, but also for their cultural, social and historical importance.
As we went to press for Winter 2012 Defra announced the 12 areas that were successful in the bidding to become Nature Improvement Areas. These will have a significant impact on many organisations over the next few years and with the funding arrangements now agreed projects are starting to evolve from ideas on paper through to on the ground actions.
Geoff Griffiths, and Ruth Evans from the University of Reading have developed a landscape scale approach to assess the impacts of land clearance for palm oil on both the environment and livelihoods of local people within Liberia.
Trees are woven into our urban and rural fabric, and provide so many benefits to our way of life, from urban temperature regulation and noise reduction through to carbon storage and, in an increasingly polluted world, air purification.
It is important that University courses deliver what Landscape Ecology needs interms of skilled proffessionals. I take a whistle stop tour of four Masters Courses based in Northern Europe to see what's available and how they compare.
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.
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.
Nature Improvement Areas (NIAs), which seek to enhance the environment on a landscape scale, are making ‘real progress’ in delivering their objectives according to Professor Sir John Lawton, as the first NIA evaluation report is published today.
The RSPB Futurescapes Programme is one of 23 finalists that have been entered into the 2016 European Citizen award. This is a chance for European citizens to vote for their favourite project. Voting has started and will end 8th May 2016, read on the hear how to vote - and view the other projects shortlisted.
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.
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.
Have you ever worried that you might spell a word wrong or use a word in the wrong way? Naturalist, educator, and author David Lukas from California provides an inspirational insight into our language, what is not working at present and how we can find the voices we need to articulate a better future.
This briefing from the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) outlines the findings of a literature review carried out by researchers based in the RHS, with assistance from the Universities of Reading and Sheffield.
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.
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.
“Rewilding needs an enabling policy environment” were the thoughts from Paul Jepson summarised in our summer newsletter. In this article Helen Meech, director of Rewilding Britain puts this statement into context and provides a fuller picture of what the next steps need to be.
Burial grounds can be beautiful places rich in wildlife, but despite them brimming with biodiversity they are surprisingly under recorded. Andrea from Caring for Gods’ Acre explains the impact of the lack of data and how funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund will literally put burial grounds on the map.
The Forestry and Woodlands Policy Statement published January 2013, sets out future policies for protecting, improving and expanding public and private woodland. One year on, the Forestry Commission report on their progress towards achieving these aims.
IALE Europe are looking for your views and experience on the field of landscape ecology and how it it works in the UK. They are looking for a broad range of experience across a wide range of proffessionals.
Often asked why he works on roundabouts (as if to say these areas are not for proper scientific or ecological research), Simon replies that roundabouts to him are not just traffic-calming devices! Read on to find out what these man-made features mean to an entomologist.
Recent evidence shows that small water-bodies are not only vital habitat for freshwater plants and animals, but also critical for successful catchment management. Pascal from The Freshwater Habitats Trust gives his perspective on their importance.
You may have heard of the Northern Forest. Tom from The Mersey Forest talks us through the origins of the project and how principles in landscape ecology are determining its implementation. Maps generated by Condatis are also featured in this article.
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.
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.
At face value, applying Lawton's four key principles "more, joined, better, bigger" makes perfect sense, but their application to specific landscapes needs careful consideration. This article explores what the required step change might entail for the Meres and Mosses Landscape.
Ancient trees are exceptional specimens. They can tell us a lot about the history of the land in which they sit and provide a tangible link to historic events. They are standing nature reserves. Kylie introduces the Tree Register and Ancient Tree Forum, which aims to build a database of these vulnerable trees.
It can be difficult and expensive for small businesses to source marketing material and images. But The South Downs National Park Authority has come up with an innovative solution, whilst in turn helping to promote the special features of the area.
ialeUK talk to Nick Gisler about his current role at Transport for London, what skills are important to young professionals and his previous work on HS2. This article also includes a mention of Wye College where Nick studied.
Can art and artists help communicate the value of landscape and environment research? Do they have a role in interdisciplinary work? These were some of the questions asked at a recent one-day workshop supported by Landscape and Arts Network and sponsored by Landscape Research and Valuing Nature.
This recent course by Dr Santiago Saura provided an excellent insight the methodological approaches which can be taken to quantify landscape connectivity through the use of the Conefor software package.
Farmland birds are continuing to decline. The annual Wild Bird Indicator statistics have been released and looking back over 40 years the long term decline in farmland birds is 50%, however the decline has slowed in recent years.
Scotland has a new atlas, created in partnership to allow users to access a new open data infrastructure for sharing biological data. This article provides fuller information on the functions and resources available and links to relevant websites.
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.
Feedback's in - this year’s ialeUK conference was a great success! Speakers and attendees were impressed on the breadth and depth of subjects discussed and the many opportunities to mingle and engage with a wide variety of people. This article summarises briefly my personal experience of the event.
A new report, Valuing England’s National Parks, published by National Parks England shows the importance of National Parks not just as iconic landscapes and part of our national identity, but as thriving rural economies contributing to national prosperity and wellbeing through their special qualities.
Weird and wonderful results are emerging as researchers make use of unusual tools and techniques, whilst exploring the darker sides of science. Two such techniques that have caught the interest of the media (and mine) are the use of 3D printing technology and slime moulds.
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......
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 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.
The ialeUK conference this year was on the topic of landscape characterisation, methods and applications in Landscape Ecology. Meg James, an ecology student from the University of Reading, gives her experience of the conference.
A recent one-day event on the topic of Ecosystem Services by Design was jointly organised by Cranfield University and the Landscape Institute East of England and South East member branches. Calila, an MA student studying landscape and urbanism provides her impressions of the day.
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.
The 25 year plan mentioned a Landscape Enterprise Network (LENs). An approach which is deliberately ‘market-led’ - aiming to build and harness private sector demand for long term landscape quality and functionality. This article explains how it works in more detail.
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.
The November issue includes several research papers on Landscape genetics, American studies, landscape fragmentation and others, whilst the October Issue focuses entirely on Intergrating Ecosystem Services with Landscape Planning.
It is essential to capture "sense of place" when undertaking Landscape and Visual Impact Assessments, but are we gathering sufficient information by driving from place to place or from one viewpoint to the next? A landscape planner from Scotland gives his point of view.
Local people are vital to ensure the UK’s parks and green spaces are used, loved and improved. With political uncertainty and dwindling public funding, local voices need to be heard louder, clearer and one of the best ways to achieve this is through the 'friends of groups'.
As well as some unusual facts about water, Caroline makes the case for rain-gardens and suggests that the household phase from a well-known supermarket: “every little helps” is not just relevant to shopping.
Researchers are invited to apply to work for up to three months on Valuing Nature topics in a new disciplinary, institutional or applied setting. £180k is available to support 5-10 placements, deadline 14th December.
I stumbled across a thought provoking document, written collaboratively by an urban ecologist and a cultural geographer of nature, Franklin Ginn (University of Bristol) and Robert A Francis (King’s College London). Here are some nuggets of wisdom that I thought particularly worth sharing.
Our seascapes are in the front-line of climate change but in policy they are often lost in the no-mans-land between the production focussed rural policies and marine planning. Jim Densham from RSPB provide the case for more muddy habitats in Scotland.
The subject of this years postgraduate workshop was Participatory GIS, held in Edinburgh. It was a successful 2-day event all round. One of the participants of the day provides her experience of the day.
The way in which we seek to understand the endemic and epidemic conditions of disease that afflicts us, has always been a matter of landscape ecology. Tom Koch from the University of British Columbia (medical geography) provides an overview of the spatial patterns of disease as a result of complex human and environmental factors.
In England, the parliamentary enclosures of the 1900’s radically altered the landscape. A similar situation was happening in Ireland but for different motivations. This article provides a brief overview of the history of land tenure in Ireland and how it affected its structure and use.
How real is this image of the earth? Are we influenced by how the photo has been taken or by whom? In this article Tom takes us through the ethics of maps and the reality that data does not speak and ecologists are biased.
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.
The winners are announced from the book competition, publicised in the summer newsletter. Members (or savvy social media followers) had a chance to win a copy of a new book on Urban Landscape Ecology, which was edited by ialeUK and featured many topics discussed at the ialeUK 2014 conference. Read on to find out what the answer was and the two lucky winners.
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.