New Year’s Day walk

We will be visiting the Backs for our field studies in 2022. I hope to include some college grounds, but this will depend on whatever Covid guidance is in force, both nationally and for the colleges.

Visits begin with the traditional New Year’s Day walk to find plants in flower – provided that outdoor gatherings are still permitted, meet outside the west door of Gt St Mary’s church at 1:00pm if you would like to take part.

Cambridge is a Covid hotspot, so please maintain social distance during the walk.

More on reforestation

Following April Bagwill’s talk about the Trillion Trees project I had a look at their website, which has lots of information. You can download their Impact Report 2016-2020 which says “Since 2016, Trillion Trees partners have been supporting the protection of more than 18.3 billion trees, and the restoration of over 1.8 billion.” This shows all of the countries where the three partners are working in forests, but the website only shows a select few that the partners want to focus on for fundraising in the next year.

April has also provided links to some more resources:

Report and interactive map on the Deforestation Fronts

Other interesting forest maps on their website.

For successful restoration of natural forests Trillion Trees recommends organisations follow the IUCN’s principles for Forest Landscape Restoration, or similarly the 10 Golden Rules of Forest Restoration.

She notes that what Trillion Trees find is that many tree-planting organisations are just concerned with getting trees in the ground, but might not make sure they survive to grow to have biodiversity and climate impacts they claim. They will be publishing an online tool in January to help people/investors decide which tree planting and forest restoration bodies to support. April describes this as a “sort of a walk-through scoring tool to provide questions to ask of an organisation or to consider to determine if their projects are just about getting trees in the ground, or if they are trying to improve biodiversity, climate and social opportunities in the long term”. Sounds useful, given how many organisations are happy to plant trees if you pay them.

The Convention on Biodiversity and Conservation in the Caribbean

The last CNHS talk this year will be on Thursday 2nd December when Ellie Devenish-Nelson and Howard Nelson will counter the cold day days of December by talking about the Caribbean.

In the lead-up to the UN Biodiversity Conference, they will consider the implications for conservation in the Caribbean of the Post-2020 Framework for the Convention on Biological Diversity. They will discuss how the opportunities for increasing protection of marine and terrestrial biodiversity presents a big challenge for this important island biodiversity hotspot.

The event will be by Zoom. Members and those on the CNHS mailing list will be sent the link for the meeting. To be added the mailing list, email webmaster [at] cnhs.org.uk . To become a member, which brings further benefits, see our membership page.

25th November NatHistFest

The 2nd Online NatHistFest will be opened on Thursday 25th November 2021 at 7:30 p.m. with talks from some of the exhibitors. These will include:

  • Matt Hayes, University Museum of Zoology, “Butterflies Through Time: engaging audiences with wildlife of the past
  • Chantel Carr, Froglife  “The Importance of educating young people on herpetology
  • Steve Allain, Cambridge & Peterborough Amphibian and Reptile Group “A county atlas for amphibians and reptiles

The event will be by Zoom. Members and those on the CNHS mailing list will be sent the link for the meeting. To be added the mailing list, email webmaster [at] cnhs.org.uk . To become a member, which brings further benefits, see our membership page.

The 2nd online NatHistFest replaces our usual Conversazione, which it was not possible to hold in the spring. It includes exhibits from CNHS members and local organisations on a wide range of topics.

The 17 exhibits from the 2020 online NatHistFest can still be viewed here.

A Trillion Trees 18th November

… a trillion reasons to thrive!

The next talk in the CNHS autumn programme is on 18th November when April Bagwill will introduce us to the Trillion Trees international collaboration. She will explain that it is not about planting trees but that their vision is to see one trillion trees re-grown, saved from loss and better protected around the world by 2050. She will talk about how this worldwide collaborative project aims to do this and to work towards a world where people and nature can thrive.

The talk is ONLINE via Zoom and will start punctually at 7:30 p.m.

Members and those on the mailing list will be emailed login details nearer the time. To be added the mailing list, email webmaster [at] cnhs.org.uk

To become a member, which brings further benefits, see the website: http://www.cnhs.org.uk/membership/

Iberian Lynx

If you enjoyed Harriet Allen’s talk on “Restoring habitat for the Iberian lynx“, or if you missed it and would like some information about Iberian lynx, you might find the following article informative.

Conservation actions see Iberian lynx claw back from brink of extinction

I found it while browsing online and it is quite recent (March 2021) but Harriet thinks it’s well worth adding to our website for anyone who wants to read more. The article says that in the Iberian peninsula (Spain and Portugal) the wild population today is around 1,000 animals, compared with just 94 in 2002. Harriet says that she is hopeful that the project to ‘re-wild’ the Iberian lynx will continue to be a success, which is very encouraging.

4th November: Hobson’s Brook

The title of the talk on 4th November is Biodiversity of the Hobson’s Brook Corridor

Dr Steve Boreham will talk about the biodiversity of the area surrounding Hobson’s Brook, a chalk stream and historic water course that rises at Nine Wells springs. As a geologist, ecologist and Trustee of Hobson’s Conduit Trust, he will also discuss conservation initiatives and threats to this important green corridor that leads in to the heart of Cambridge City.

The talk is ONLINE via Zoom and will start punctually at 7:30 p.m.

Members and those on the mailing list will be emailed login details nearer the time. To be added the mailing list, email webmaster [at] cnhs.org.uk

To become a member, which brings further benefits, see the website: http://www.cnhs.org.uk/membership/

28th October: A Choice

Jonathan Shanklin, the speaker for our next online talk, on Thursday 28th October, is well-known both to members of CNHS, being a past President and having been involved in the Society for many years. He is also known more widely as one of the team who discovered the ozone hole in 1985.

He is offering the audience a choice of titles:

  • Marvel at the Moon
  • The Flora of Antarctica (and South Georgia & Falklands)
  • The Natural History of Comets
  • An astronomer in Antarctica

Do join us for this talk on Zoom. Even if he does not give the talk you would choose, it will be informative and entertaining. He is an extremely knowledgeable speaker and able to speak authoritatively on all these subjects. He adds that “all will contrive to include mention of climate change and the ozone hole”.

Members and those on the mailing list will be emailed login details before the meeting.
To be added the mailing list for events email webmaster [at] cnhs.org.uk
To become a member, which brings further benefits, see the website: http://www.cnhs.org.uk/membership/

October Field Studies

A small party of members met at Bryon’s Pool for the October field studies visit to Trumpington Meadows.  The weather was mild and whilst there had been a little morning rain the afternoon was dry.  Jonathan had done a quick recce and thought that there might be a struggle to find many fungi, but was proved wrong.  The report of this visit, and reports from previous visits to Trumpington Meadows are elsewhere on this website in the Trumpington Meadows 2021 Diary.

The next visit is scheduled for Sunday 28th November and will focus on bryophytes. CNHS members and those on the CNHS mailing lists will be sent details of meeting place and time.

Waxcaps at Trumpington Meadows

Wildlife Trust Cambridge Group talks

The Cambridge Local Group of the Wildlife Trust for Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Northamptonshire has a programme of monthly online talks this autumn.

The first is on Monday 25th October 2021, when Keira Wingader will talk about “The natural history of the Dingy Skipper butterfly”.

On Monday 29th November 2021, Henry Stanier will give a presentation on “Stonechat research at the Great Fen”.

The December talk is earlier in the month than usual, on Monday 13th December 2021, when Iain Webb will talk about “Planning the return to in-person events”.

All talks are online at 7:00 p.m. and tickets are available through the Wildlife Trust’s events page. Tickets cost £3.09 for Wildlife Trust members, and £4.68 for non-members, of which £2.50 and £4.00 (respectively) goes directly to supporting the local Wildlife Trust’s work.