Case studies of SNS bursary and grant applications
Applicant: two individuals
Purpose: travel and equipment
Match funding: No
Aim of study: To determine how Orthoptera (grasshoppers and crickets) and bumblebees (Bombus spp.) respond to rewilding in two former arable fields. The two study sites, Arger Fen & Spouse’s Vale and Black Bourn Valley, are both SWT reserves comprising several hundred hectares of former arable land.
Outcomes of the study: Rewilding is an evolving topic in conservation and there are several projects underway in Suffolk. However, there have been few studies on the impacts on invertebrates. This project has practical value providing information that can be used to identify the habitat features that grasshoppers, crickets and bumblebees require in former arable fields at various stages of natural reversion.
Applicant: Landguard Conservation Trust
Amount: £450 over three years
Purpose: purchase of sim card for phone, electricity
Match funding: Wageningen University, Netherlands, personal donation
Aim of study: a) research into the migration of Nathusius’s bat from the continent through Suffolk using Dutch nanotags. b) research into the changing migration pattern of the Yellow-browed warbler across Europe and Africa through Suffolk using nanotags.
Outcomes of the study: opportunity to collaborate with European and North African colleagues in the detection of bats and birds migrating through Suffolk using automated telemetry. Suffolk is at the forefront of this new technology, reporting early pioneering results in The Times, on social media and on the internet across Europe and the USA.
Applicant: Suffolk Wildlife Trust
Purpose: accessories for hazel dormouse footprint tunnel survey packs, laminated survey guidance
Match funding: None
Aim of study: prove effectiveness of footprint tunnels as a survey method for detecting dormice and provide new records which will expand knowledge of dormouse distribution in Suffolk.
Outcomes of the study: non-licenced volunteers will be able undertake valuable surveys of dormice. The project will help to promote interest in surveying and recording hazel dormice. Increased knowledge of dormouse distribution in Suffolk.
Purpose: travel, collecting equipment
Match funding: None
Aim of study: to study the distribution of freshwater Mollusca, particularly the genus Pisidium (Pea Mussels), in a network of ponds in the parish of Great Glemham to determine the effects of microhabitat variations on the composition of the Molluscan fauna present.
Outcomes of the study: identification of unifying habitat features, allowing the sites to be classified; assessment of the impact of the wider environment on pond fauna; assessment of freshwater Mollusca as indicators of habitat quality and ecosystem health.
Applicant: River Blyth Otter Group
Purpose: equipment and travel expenses for volunteers
Match funding: River Blyth Otter Group, volunteer hours
Aim of study: to assess otter distribution and family dynamics in the River Blyth catchment.
Outcomes of the study: it is believed that otters have large territories on Suffolk’s lowland rivers. The use of trail cameras by volunteers will enable the group to assess how far individuals travel and whether the same animals use the upper reaches and the estuary over a period of one year.
Applicant: Suffolk Bat Group (SBG)
Purpose: purchase of specialist bat surveying equipment
Match funding: Aviva Community Fund, Essex & Suffolk Water Branch Out Fund, Suffolk Bat Group, Suffolk Biodiversity Project Fund
Aim of study: extend the ability of SBG to survey woodlands, water-bodies and wetlands, conduct long-term monitoring of bat populations and identify areas for future conservation (e.g. bat box projects) using harp traps.
Outcomes of the study: the Group will be able to contribute to national bat surveying projects as well as local surveys, all of which improve our knowledge and understanding of bat species. Members of the public will be able to learn about bats and their lives by having the opportunity to see them up close.
Purpose: travel and subsistence costs for research trip to Alberta and British Columbia, Canada
Match funding: Botanical Research Fund, Percy Sladen Memorial Fund
Aim of study: To fill in gaps in understanding of the natural ecology of fen orchid Liparis loeselii to: Facilitate the preparation of a comprehensive account of its ecology in the UK, b) Inform management of fen orchid sites, c) underpin work to reintroduce fen orchid to Suffolk fens
Outcomes of the study: provide evidence for the England conservation strategy for fen orchid under Natural England’s Species Recovery Programme. This includes data about the conditions with which fen orchids are evolved to cope and will inform site managers dealing with reintroductions. New understanding of the dispersal processes that underpin natural fen orchid population dynamics’.