Ludlow Wildlife Watch Families - John Muir Award, visit to Nipstone
08 December 2017, 10:00 - 14:30 (Add to calendar)
An exciting day, exploring a beautiful nature reserve and doing something good for conservation, whilst bagging yourself a 'wild christmas tree' .
Lunch around a roaring campfire toasting marshmallows with the opportunity for the children to create their own fire for hot chocolate, then make decorations to go on their wild tree.
Some years ago Shropshire Wildlife Trust teamed up with English Nature (later Natural England), the Forestry Commission and others to restore heathland across the Stiperstones ridge through a project called Back to purple. Today most of the conifers have gone and the purple flowers of heather along with juicy, dark whinberries have reappeared. When the emperor moth caterpillar can creep from one end of the Stiperstones ridge to the other, the Back to purple project will have achieved its original aim. The scheme has spurred on the felling of hundreds of acres of conifers planted in the 1960s and given heather and whinberry a chance to return.
Conifer plantations were felled at Nipstone in 2001 and 2006 and the speed of recovery has been amazing. Already drifts of purple heather and bilberry are back, skylarks and meadow pipits nesting among the tussocks.
An 11-acre swathe of oaks, rowan and ash has been planted, creating new foraging habitat for bats and birds.