“We need to know more about nature so we can protect it properly, but we also need everyone to feel that they can get involved in spotting and recording wildlife too,” says National Trust countryside ranger Gwen Potter. And the reason is simple.
Without all the surveying and recording done by thousands of enthusiastic volunteers and citizen scientists, nature would be in a far worse state than it is today.
Without such schemes, we would not know which species are doing fine and which are declining or threatened with extinction and in need of conservation,” explains Richard Fox, head of recording for the charity Butterfly Conservation.
For Ed Bartlett, bioblitz co-ordinator for the National Trust, survey data “can help identify trends and patterns in distribution and abundance of wildlife”.
And they are a really important part of the National Trust’s work. There’s a dedicated biological survey team that have been conducting surveys for the last 30 years. Their work helps to decide the best way to manage habitats to benefit wildlife and measure change.
The charity also encourages people from all walks of life and abilities to take part in the public surveys it organises, yielding results that really count at national and local levels.
photo: Yorkshire Coast National Trust Images / Zoe Frank