Nature Notes 18 August 2020

Observations from staff and members on our Nature Reserves this week.

Nature reserves may look completely wild, but our 19 reserves across Northern Ireland are actually carefully managed by a dedicated team. We protect, restore and create a mix of habitats where wildlife can thrive.

Slievenacloy Nature Reserve

Still lots of small heath butterflies out yesterday as well as red admiral, peacock, green-veined white and small copper. Devil's-bit scabious coming out in flower so well worth a visit to Slievenacloy now if you like wildflowers! (and hoverflies!) ~ Andy

We have also been rush cutting at Slievenaloy. Rushes provide valuable structural and plant variety in grasslands but they can spread and reduce the diversity of a species rich area - so management of them is important ~ Ronald

Small heath butterfly- Wendy Carter

Small heath butterfly- Wendy Carter

Umbra Nature Reserve

More habitat management here too. At this time of year, when birds nest's have gone, we spend a lot of time maintaining our nature reserves for diversity. Ragwort clearing took place last week to reduce its encroachment onto the sand dune system - we removed seven 1 tonne bags! ~ Ronald

Umbra landscape view

Umbra Nature Reserve