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Cynllun Rheoli Coetir Cymunedol
Community Woodland
Management Plan
Nosweithiau Ymgynghori
Cyhoeddus
Public Consultation Evenings
Diwrnod agored
Open Day
Gwyddoniaeth y Dinesydd
Citizen Science
Arolygon Coetir
Woodland Surveys
Arolygon Coetir
Woodland Surveys
Arolygon Coetir
Woodland Surveys
Arolygon Coetir
Woodland Surveys
Arolygon Coetir
Woodland Surveys
Cyswllt / Contact:
info@dyfiwoodlands.org.uk
Kirsten Manley
Coetiroedd Dyfi Woodlands
Neu ymwelwch â'r canlynol:
or visit the following:
www.facebook.org/dyfiwoodlands

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Coetiroedd Dyfi Woodlands Presentation by Kirsten Manley from COBWEB Workshop, 20th May 2014

Editor's Notes

  1. A social enterprise based in the heart of the Dyfi Biosphere Reserve. We aim to raise the profile of woodlands and the natural environment through delivering outdoor volunteering opportunities, land and learning programmes, and through helping people of all ages to develop a deeper connection with and understanding of the natural world.
  2. Kirsten Manley of Coetiroedd Dyfi Woodlands co-ordinated last year’s project: Community Woodland Management Plan. The aim was to empower the community to have a say in how a NRW site could be used and managed in the future.
  3. Coed Ty Gwyn is a Natural Resources Wales woodland which is in easy reach of the communities of Machynlleth and Forge. Initially the Dyfi FEI used a small part of this woodland. NRW have agreed to extend the area of use to include 24 acres of mixed woodland.
  4. An aerial view of the woodland.
  5. A public consultation meeting was set up where those interested in the future of Coed Ty Gwyn attended. They gave their ideas and suggestions about the future use of the woodland. Focus themes discussed were: Education, Health and Well Being, Recreation, Biodiversity/Wildlife and Products.
  6. An open day was held for the public to engage in a range of activities run by local providers which have already taken place in Coed Ty Gwyn. They all gave feedback about their experience and again contributed to the survey on what they would want from the woodland in the future.
  7. However, the public needed to get to know the physical outlay of the woodland and we needed to know whether and where certain protected species were located. The concept of Citizen Science was a important strategy for meeting both targets.
  8. An NRW map was used to divide the woodland into manageable zones according to tree species…
  9. COBWEB provided us with a more accurate and clearly marked aerial photograph of the woodland.
  10. We wanted the public to gain skills in identification and data recording. We also wanted to ensure data collected was verified by a professional. So we invited professionals with experience of gathering this sort of data to provide a talk about the species being identified and how to identify signs of their existance in a woodland setting. Our first recording sessions were for ancient woodland indicators.
  11. For each session, participants were also provided with information sheets which they could take away with them and transfer their new set of skills to other woodland environments. This would be something COBWEB’s new app. could include – species information.
  12. The data gathered was uploaded manually to a national database: iRecord. However, this database was not accessible to participants unless they logged in with our login details…
  13. … so COBWEB transferred this data to a dynamic map of the woodland which was uploaded onto the Dyfi Biosphere website: www.dyfibiosphere.org.uk. Now participants could see the results of the two days’ surveys immediately.
  14. Participants found the immersive experience and talks very valuable. Experts from Natural Resources Wales, the Centre for Alternative Technology, Montgomeryshire Wildlife Trust and a reliable local enthusiast helped with this aspect of the Citizen Science experience.
  15. The data was initially gathered using a paper method… photographs of pieces of evidence were brought to the expert to verify.
  16. The options in the paper proforma were based on the information provided by COBWEB about the options the app. users could be shown… see this sample with options. The paper version also provided a space for the participants/end users to make comments about the process of data recording in this way.
  17. Tammy Strettan from MWT had already been using a simple digital data recording system as the Montgomeryshire County Recorder. She introduced her system to us…
  18. The app was simple to use, simple to teach others how to use and the data could be uploaded at the participants home and emailed to CDW. This made the transfer of information from participant to iRecord more effective and manageable. The positive aspects of this app was fed back to the COBWEB team. The thought
  19. Our final data gathering days were focused on using the digital method of data recording. We had the paper records as back up for those who were not comfortable with this. We found an array of challenges: not everyone’s phone was able to upload the app; the gps was not always accessible when beneath the canopy and some participants were not confident in uploading the data at home and emailing it to us. We suggested to COBWEB that a set of phones/ipads should be provided for participants with perhaps some initial training to help them become more confident in the use of the technology.
  20. As we are a small organisation with limited technological tools and experience, we welcomed COBWEB’s support in providing us with maps based on the data gathered. These are invaluable for the second phase of the project where we will be developing the work programme for the woodland. It was also useful during our Woodland Management Plan workshop where those who had not participated in the Citizen Science aspect of the project. They were able to get an overview of the array of protected species present in Coed Ty Gwyn.
  21. On your desk you will find a summary report on the project. A downloadable copy is available on the Dyfi Biosphere website and a full copy of the report is now available in the National Library of Wales.
  22. For further information about the project or use of digital data gathering with volunteers, do get in touch. Or to see how volunteers got on in each session, visit our facebook page under photo albums.