Thursday 11 August 2016

BSBI events for recorders in September

Blanket bog north of Ballyvourney
Image: Catherine Ketch
Sometimes a BSBI botanist has some hard choices to make. You look at your diary for the first weekend in September and - aargh! - two mouthwatering BSBI training/recording events and you have to choose one. But which?

You could head for Shrewsbury and the BSBI Recorders' Conference, or over to Co. Cork for the Cork Recording Event. To help you make up your mind, here's a bit more info:

The Recorders' Conference runs from 2nd-4th September and is aimed at anyone actively recording for Atlas 2020. The first two days feature seven talks, one demo and five workshops, including a Vegetative ID workshop led by John Poland. There's a fieldtrip to a local reserve on the third and final day.

Strawberry Tree, native in W. Cork -
recorders will be on the look-out for this one!
Image: Clare Heardman
More details here and you'll need to book by 14th August please. 

The Cork Recording Event runs from 1st-4th September, is based in Ballyvourney and is aimed at any botanists (from beginner to expert) who would like to explore some of the best habitats Co. Cork has to offer while collecting records for Atlas 2020. The first day is based in East Cork at one of the largest saltmarshes in Ireland, learning to identify some of the more difficult genera (e.g. Salicornia & Atriplex) with Paul Green (County Recorder for Waterford & joint County Recorder for Wexford). 

The Gearagh
Image: Catherine Ketch
The next three days will be based in the woodlands, mountains & valleys around Macroom and Millstreet, including the famous alluvial woodland of The Gearagh.

More details here and you'll need to book by 28th August please.

It's hard to say which event will give you the best chance of picking up some useful ID tips from BSBI County Recorders, those helpful expert botanists who collate our plant records and do stuff like this. Around 20 of them have already booked in to the Recorders' Conference and some will be leading workshops and giving talks. 

St Gobnait's Wood, right opposite your
accommodation in Ballyvourney
Image@ Clare Heardman
But the Recorders' Conference only gives you one day in the field vs four in Co. Cork, where you'll be botanising alongside the likes of Clare Heardman (County Recorder for West Cork) and Edwina Cole (caretaker for Mid and East Cork), Rory Hodd (joint County Recorder for Kerry and stalwart of the celebrated Rough Crew), BSBI Irish Officer Maria Long and of course plant-spotter extraordinaire Paul GreenIf you want to pick botanical brains, those are some great brains to pick!

Tough call isn't it? Here are those links again for more details and booking forms: Recorders' Conference or Cork Recording Event? Decision time!

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