Marsh Lepidoptera Awards

2015 - The Heart of England Forest and Adrian Fowles

Promotion of Lepidoptera Award – The Heart of England Forest

The aim of Heart of England Forest is to recreate the Forest of Arden by creating, managing and reverting to native broad leaf 30,000 acres of woodland. So far they have converted and improved 5 major woods (comprising some 2,000 acres of largely conifer plantations) to broadleaf in very quick time. Prior to this, the area was very poor for Lepidoptera, but now many areas are reporting an increase in the number and variety of species being recorded. So far the woods have been reconnected with over 3,000 acres of native broad-leafed plantation. Unusually large 30-50 metre rides have been created to form permanent areas for grassland species with allowances made for tree growth. The Brown Hairstreak colony at Grafton Wood in Worcestershire is only 1 kilometre away and it is hoped/planned that the species will spread throughout the 30,000 acres of The Heart of England Forest. This area has the potential to become the most diverse and important area in Warwickshire for Lepidoptera.

Lifetime Achievement Award – Adrian Fowles

Adrian Fowles has recently retired as a Senior Invertebrate Ecologist at Natural Resources Wales after a career spanning over 35 years. He has spent a lifetime promoting Lepidoptera recording and conservation in Wales and his ongoing support allowed Butterfly Conservation to establish an office in Wales in 2002 and implement an on-going programme of conservation work and recording. Adrian ensured Countryside Council for Wales (CCW) support for the purchase of Butterfly Conservation’s two reserves in Wales and also guided Butterfly Conservation during the transition from CCW to Natural Resources Wales.

Adrian has been a mentor to budding Lepidoptera enthusiasts. He established the Dyfed Invertebrate Group in the 1980s and became the Cardiganshire County Moth Recorder, where he earned a reputation for nocturnal habits. He has been a driver behind much of the research on Marsh Fritillary metapopulations and genetics and developed a method of habitat assessment and mapping that now covers many of the Marsh Fritillary metapopulations in Wales.
In the 1980s he worked on the Nature Conservancy Council Invertebrate Site Register team and pioneered work on invertebrates on exposed Riverine Sediments. In 1991 he became CCW’s Invertebrate Ecologist and Senior Invertebrate Ecologist in 1996. He has developed a Site Quality Index for Saproxylic insects that is still in use and a monitoring approach for invertebrate features of SSSI’s in Wales. Over his career he has found several species new to Britain and many new to Wales and in 1988 rediscovered the Welsh Clearwing in Wales.

Pictured: A representative from The Heart of England Forest receiving their award from Nick Carter, MCT Trustee (top) and Adrian Fowles receiving his award from Nick Carter, MCT Trustee (bottom)


Butterfly Conservation
Manor Yard
East Lulworth

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