Hundreds of species in Victoria Park
Published on: 26 Sep 2015
MORE than 400 species of plants and animals were found in Victoria Park during a unique ‘bioblitz’.
With the help of Victoria Park Action Group, 900 people took part in the Bioblitz in July.
Bioblitz organiser, ecologist and VPAG member Alex Morss explained: “The Bioblitz was a fun, two-day community event aimed at finding, identifying and celebrating all the wildlife we could find in Victoria Park.
“We managed to find 409 different species living in the park. Those people who joined in also created some beautiful, wildlife-inspired art work.”
The art was on show at Windmill Hill City Farm, though sadly the exhibition ended before the Voice went to press.
“It was a fantastic community event thanks to lots of amazing volunteers and participants.
“It was also real citizen science, on a large scale, with everyone involved becoming ecologists for two days, learning how to do wildlife surveys with our expert volunteers, using special equipment and recording their results.
“The results will help inform more wildlife-friendly park management.
“Our results show that the park is already an important site for hedgehogs, bats and pollinators. The park is on a wildlife corridor through the heart of the city, which makes it easier for wildlife to recolonize.”
VPAG members have been helping Bristol City Council to introduce more wildlife-friendly habitats, including meadow areas, coppicing, tree planting, more bat and bird boxes and new native wild flower areas. Children from St Mary Redcliffe and Victoria Park primary schools helped to create the new wild flower areas.
With more wildlife-friendly management, the species count should rise again, said Alex. The bioblitz involved 420 children from St Mary Redcliffe primary, teachers, parents, 60 volunteers including expert guests, and 400 park users of all ages. Other volunteers came from VPAG, Bristol Natural History Consortium, Bristol Naturalists’ Society, UWE, Avon Wildlife Trust, Hedgehog Rescue and Avon Bat Group.
• You can share Victoria Park wildlife photos or ask experts to identify species at: www.ispotnature.org/projects/victoriaparkbristol
• Download the full 409 species list at: www.alexmorss.co.uk