Beautiful Butterfly

Yarner Wood, Bovey Valley and Trendlebere Down, located within the East Dartmoor Woods and Heaths National Nature Reserve, are fabulous hotspots for butterflies! Yarner Wood was one of the first sites to take on the annual recording of butterflies back in 1976, when the UK Butterfly Monitoring Scheme began. https://ukbms.org/methods Volunteer butterfly surveyors walking the Yarner Wood transect The ‘transect walk’ is quite an undertaking, requiring surveyors to walk a fixed route, in good weather, on a weekly basis betweenRead more

NESTEGG: You reap what you sow

Dr Malcolm Burgess explains the value of long-term nest box monitoring primarily at Yarner Wood In 1955, soon after Yarner Wood was designated as a National Nature Reserve, 50 nestboxes were put up in a small area near today’s office. These were for an experiment investigating whether Blue tits had any height preference for nesting, with two boxes put on trees at different heights to test this. The addition of nestboxes to Yarner Wood had an unintended consequence. In theRead more

Yarner Wood: Open Air Laboratory and Conservation Gem

Natural England are linking up with external contributors in our blogs to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the declaration of Yarner Wood as a National Nature Reserve (NNR). Yarner Wood, made ancient by the crucial relationship between trees and fungi, has seen many shifting attitudes towards it across it’s long past. In recent centuries, up to 1952, these beautiful woodlands were owned as part of the Yarner Estate. During this time, Yarner Wood was not a place of particular conservationRead more

There is still a Forest on the Hill

Thanks to Natural England and its predecessors, Yarner Wood is still a forest (well, a wood) on a hill. It still mainly consists of sessile oak woodland with a rowan understory and bilberry field layer, as it was when it was bought 70 years ago and made a National Nature Reserve (NNR) in May 1952. This made it one of the first NNR’s to be declared. Now Yarner Wood lies within a wider resilient landscape including the addition of BoveyRead more