Welcome to the Year of Adventure
Wales is where the adventure starts in 2016 - find out more.
Natural Resources Wales (NRW) has started a 2 year monitoring programme on a large wetland area in Abercregan as part of a rejuvenation project.
Natural Resources Wales is issuing temporary guidance to help farmers manage slurry following the recent wet weather.
People in St Asaph are being invited to a public drop-in session, run by Natural Resources Wales, to find out more about the next steps towards improving flood defences in the city.
Information about our organisation, the work we do, our news, consultations, reports and vacancies.
Find out how we assess if a business complies with environmental legislation, details of our charges and if a site has a permit, licence or exemption.
Find places to go and things to do in the outdoors. We’ve got lots of information to help plan your visit.
Our role in planning and development and what you need to do to protect wildlife, landscape and people if you are a planning a development.
Our approach to gathering evidence, what information is available, and where you can access it.
Find out how to get involved with us and the land we manage, and details of our work with community groups and social enterprises.
Information about the Welsh forest industry and our management of the Welsh Government Woodland Estate.
Advice to those working in the farming sector and details of our role in supporting the development of a sustainable agricultural industry Wales.
Find out more information about how we help conserve the wildlife and biodiversity in Wales.
Learn about your flood risk and what to do during a flood, including how to sign up for flood alerts.
Information for waste sites, including details of the landfill allowance scheme and statutory recycling details for local authorities.
Flood Wardens from all across Wales shared their experiences and knowledge at an event held recently by Natural Resources Wales in Llandudno. There, wardens met with representatives from emergency services, flood authorities and voluntary organisations, to discuss exactly what their role should be before, during and after a flood. They also took part in workshops to discuss best practice in keeping themselves safe and also the difficult decisions facing flood authorities and emergency services when having to choose where to send valuable resources. Harnessing the power of social media We use our Twitter account @NatResWales to update people about flood risk and point people towards live flood warnings on our website. One volunteer has set up his own website to keep people informed about flooding risks. Barry Griffiths from Kinmel Bay has been a volunteer for 26 years. At the event, he explained how useful websites and social media can be to raise awareness in communities. Having set up his own website, Kinmel Bay Flood Defence Plan, he is now busy harnessing the power of social media by setting up pages for his own flood group and helping others across the country. Barry explained: “It all started 26 years ago when my house was affected by the Towyn floods.“ "It started out as a personal interest as I could see the potential in tidal energy projects working hand in hand with coastal defences. “But as I started to realise the impact that floods can have, this changed to an interest for the wider community. He added: "I think most people don’t really take an interest in flooding until it actually happens to them. “To begin with the website was an experiment to try and become more inclusive. “We have seven or eight wardens for an area population of 7,000, so it would take hours to try and look in on everyone. “Although, according to reports, almost 30% of people have no access to the internet or take no interest, the vast majority of people do. “It’s a very quick way to communicate and spread the word, it enhances what we do.” Learning curve Jill Bullen is a Flood Warden for Borth and Ynyslas and works for Natural Resources Wales as a Senior Landscape Specialist, based in Aberystwyth. Jill said:“I’ve been a flood warden for about three years. “I joined Borth Community Council and we used to receive correspondence that asked us to update our floodplan. “We’ve now updated and widened the flood plan to become an emergency plan that can deal with several situations such as power cuts and extreme weather such as snow. “Every time we deal with an emergency we learn lessons and update our plan, so it’s become a living document. “The latest part we’re updating is to designate flood warden areas into zones. “We talk about zones rather than using street or local names, as some people are not familiar with these. “The event has been really helpful not just to meet and talk to other flood wardens, but also to pick up information and different ways of doing things that could be better.” Met Office records, going back to 1910, show that Wales had the wettest December on record. Anyone can create a flood plan – you can download a template to create a plan to help your home, business or community be prepared for flooding. For more information visit the Flood Awareness Wales Facebook page.
Wetlands are not only home to rare plants and wildlife, they play a vital role in ensuring that we have a future that is sustainable, and provide many of the things which society relies upon. They retain flood water, purify it, and help the rural economy by bringing areas of largely unproductive farmland land back into use as grazing. Wetlands also have a key role to play in the battle against climate change. With the potential for drier summers, managing wetlands is vital, because in peak condition they can capture and store massive amounts of carbon that would otherwise be released into rivers and the atmosphere. Some wetlands are only seasonally flooded or waterlogged, such as marshy grassland. Others, such as our peat-forming wetlands, are wet all year round. Wetlands in Wales Wales is home to many types of wetlands including fens, bogs, grazing marshes, swamps, marshy grasslands and of course lakes, ponds and rivers. Wales’ upland wetlands, in particular the blanket bogs that stretch all the way along the upland spine of Wales, provide dramatic wild open spaces and contribute much to the character of the landscape. Many of them are also National Nature Reserves, which we manage to restore and conserve their natural features for plants and wildlife to live. Easy access along board walks and paths also make them great places for people to visit and enjoy. Natural Resources Wales works closely with thousands of landowners and other organisations to restore and maintain many of our nation’s wetlands. North Wales The LIFE Project has restored approximately 1,850 acres (the size of 1,000 football pitches) of wetland fens on Anglesey and the Llŷn Peninsula. This is one of the largest and most ambitious of its kind in Europe and is funded by the EU. It consists of 11 Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI), four of which are also National Nature Reserves – Cors Bodeilio, Cors Erddreiniog, Cors Geirch and Cors Goch. They provide flood retention, water quality improvement and make more land available for grazing. Mid Wales Cors Caron, near Tregaron covers a huge area of over 800 hectares and 6 km in length. It is home to a wide range of wildlife and plants. The reserve boasts three raised bogs - areas of deep peat that have built up over the last 12,000 years – and these, in turn, are surrounded by a complex and unique mix of habitats. With boardwalks (3.5 km) - accessible for wheelchair users, surfaced paths (6 km) and a riverside walk (7.5 km) there’s an adventure for everyone to enjoy. The abundance of insects provide a valuable source of food for birds and mammals. Otters, water voles, water shrews and polecats can be found on the reserve. South Wales The Crymlyn Bog is a haven for wildlife between industrialised East Swansea and Neath Port Talbot. It’s the largest lowland bog in the UK and has fascinating and diverse wildlife, including the rare fen raft spider – Britain’s largest – and various birds of prey. The Newport Wetlands National Nature Reserve bustles with a variety of birds visiting from a colder climate. Coots, egrets and herons are common sights on the reserve’s reedbeds. The rare golden-eye duck, short-eared owl and merlin are also visitors. There is a three kilometre network of paths around the reedbeds which are easy to walk, cycle and suitable for wheelchair users and pushchairs. To celebrate World Wetlands Day a walk will take place at Newport Wetlands on Tuesday 2 February 3:30 - 5:30pm. The Llanelli wetlands, managed by The Wildfowl & Wetlands Trust is a 450 acre mosaic of lakes, scrapes, pools, streams and lagoons adjoining the salt marshes and shore of the scenic Burry Inlet. The range of habitats makes the 450 acre site a refuge for many different plants and animals with tens of thousands of migratory birds visiting every year. The LIFE Natura 2000 Programme Wales has some of the best lowland wetlands in Europe, 11 of which are specially protected as Natura 2000 sites. The LIFE Natura 2000 Programme has produced costed action plans for every Wetland Natura 2000 site in Wales, planning for the future and helping to obtain vital funds.
Wales has so many interesting natural places to visit including national and local Nature Reserves, marvellous mountains, rambling rivers and the best coast path in the world. For instance have you ever bounced on a bog, hurried in a heathland, wandered in a woodland or scrambled on sand dunes? If not then this is the year to do it! Be adventurous….. With adventure meaning different things to different people you can create a sense of challenge by: Investigating a new habitat, look for creatures on a mini beast safari, bird watch, go rock pooling, have a go at an OPAL worm or tree survey. Go on a quest, go geo caching, orienteering, build a shelter, take part in a scavenger hunt or even have a bear hunt! Relish an adventure – follow a trail or go animal tracking, go on a rescue mission, spend a whole day in a wild place. Explore a local green space, go where the wild things are! Discover how being outside benefits your family’s health and enjoy the best day out ever! It can be hard to prise the family away from tablets, smart phones and the television but reducing screen time could have important benefits to your children’s educational achievement and health. The natural environment is incredibly rich and stimulating for all ages so get out there and breathe the fresh air. Top tips for keeping everybody happy while exploring and learning outdoors include: Making sure everyone has appropriate clothing for the weather. As you know it rains a lot in Wales so invest in a good waterproofs if you can and thick soled shoes to keep little toes warm. Ideally, make sure everyone is wearing layers that can be shed if things heat up. In the summer wear a hat, sun cream and if needed insect repellent. Take plenty of water and snacks to keep energy up as moving around outside burns it off quickly. Plan your trip before you set off but the journey is the start of your adventure so include the younger members of the family in the planning, let them try reading a map and help plan what food, drinks and kit to take Make sure you have the equipment you need for your activity e.g. for a mini beast hunt you might want a couple of yogurt pots and small plastic spoons, an ID sheet and a magnifying glass if you have one. For further information contact email@example.com You can get great ideas of things to do outside as well as items like ID sheets and scavenger hunts at www.woodlandtrust.org.uk/naturedetectives If you would like to get involved in a citizen science survey please go to www.opalexplorenature.org
From the high grasslands, blanket bogs and heathland, right up to the rocky mountain tops, our Welsh Mountains and uplands are full of life and many have been designated as Natura 2000 sites of European importance to help protect and improve these habitats.DISCOVER MORE OF OUR VIDEO BLOGS
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