“Hedges provide food sources, nesting sites, foraging habitats and are wildlife corridors for a huge variety of insects, birds and mammals. They also help prevent soil erosion, give shelter for livestock and sequester carbon. What’s not to like!”, says Megan Lock, Farmland Biodiversity Advisor at the Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust (GWCT).
Dr Francis Buner, Senior Conservation Scientist, along with Megan and research assistant Jodie Case, will be on hand at the 2021 National Hedgelaying Championship in Hampshire on 23 October to explain the benefits of good hedgerow management for small game, owls and other farmland biodiversity.
“We will have a stand at the event where visitors will find lots of practical advice and information about managing hedges and other wildlife-friendly farming techniques,” said Francis. “Come along and discover more about our monitoring and conservation work for threatened species like the grey partridge, and what you can do to help. And find out how Farmer Clusters are getting hundreds of farmers working together for biodiversity.”
The Owl Box Initiative will also be at the event. Jodie Case from the project said: “Hedgerows
are an important hunting habitat for barn owls, supporting their prey species of voles, mice and shrews, and a wide range of other wildlife too.” Jodie will have a barn owl nest box on show and children and adults alike can hear all about the owls and their prey, and get hands on with a real harvest mouse nest, and learn how to monitor small mammals with an ink tracking tunnel”.
The event, organised by the National Hedgelaying Society, is taking place at Rotherfield Park Estate, near Alton in Hampshire on Saturday 23 October 2021. The remarkable skills of some of the best hedgelayers from around the country will be on show, using a range of different regional styles of hedgelaying. Gates open at 9am and admission costs £5 per person, under 18’s and NHLS members FREE with membership card. More information at hedgelaying.org.uk