Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Invasive Plant Species in Britain

Professor Denis Murphy of the University of Glamorgan gaves us a fascinating insight into Invasive Plant Species in Britain: a Historical, Scientific and Socioeconomic Perspective
The talk focussed on the 4 "worst" plants, the infamous Japanese Knotweed (left), Himalayan Balsam, Rhododendron ponticum and 
Giant Hogweed and explained how they got here, the problems that they cause to people and property and the actions that can be take or are being considered in dealing with them. For instance the Japanese Knotweed Psyllid Aphalara itadori which is being considered as a biological control against the plant.

If you are interested in reading more about non native species you may find this website useful DEFRA GB Non-native Species Information Portal

When it comes to these some of our local ancestors must take some blame ... for Japanese Knotweed the database records Location of first record: Glamorgan

But as Denis reminded us - just 12,000  years ago Britain was an ice covered wasteland. So all our plants and animals are non native if you think long enough

The Wonderful World of Worms

Teresa Darbyshire of the National Museum of Wales gave us an excellent short talk after our AGM on The Wonderful World of Worms: Marine Bristleworms (Polychaetes) & Their Importance

This was an interesting talk and I had never realised how important these creatures were in understanding the marine environment around us in Wale. There is information about this work available on the Museum Website at http://www.museumwales.ac.uk/en/160/

Having seen some wonderful pictures Teresa was happy to answer a number of questions and key amongst these were questions about identification and she told us that there are plans for an on-line system similar to the excellent website about British Bivalves..

What website you ask... well here it is http://naturalhistory.museumwales.ac.uk/britishbivalves/Browse_taxa.php

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Radyr Court Road

One of our members has brought to our attention a proposed development of 48 houses on a greenfield site that will will be destroyed and replaced with a 48 dwelling housing estate, and the lane that will suffer 13 times the traffic.in her words "I walk along this little woodland area often and would be devastated if they build all over it."

It's clear from the location of this development that the view from Hailey Park which we regularly visit will be compromised by this development

A campaign website has been set-up at http://www.saveradyrcourtroad.org.uk/

They are looking to get people to sing an on-line petition and need at least 50 local people on the petition, then they will earn the right to address the Planning Committee in person to make their feelings known.  But they would like many, many more, to demonstrate how much the local community values its rural surroundings.

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