Thursday, 27 June 2019

Aquatic Plant Project launched in Ireland

Lynda (second from right) and participants
BSBI Aquatic Plant Project
Image: M. McCorry
BSBI's Aquatic Plant Project has now started, with an opening training day on 22nd June in Lavistown led by Lynda Weekes. Participants - who included ecological consultants, academics, public authority staff and BSBI members - enjoyed a full day with an aquatic plants ID theme: first, an introductory talk about aquatics, looking at the main taxonomic groups and becoming familiar with the terminology; then a lab session to help people gain hands-on experience looking at fresh specimens; and finally a walk along the banks of the River Nore to look at aquatic plants in situ.

Feedback was very positive, with one participant commenting that the day was pitched really well so that "all levels got something out of it". 

There are lots more sessions planned for the Aquatic Plant Project - coming up next is a run of sessions with aquatics expert Nick Stewart, starting on 29th June. Full details are on this page and you will need to contact Paul Green, County Recorder for Co. Wexford, to find out more and to book a space - contact details are on the webpage. 

If you're based in Britain and would like to attend one of these sessions - I'm afraid you will have to travel to Ireland! It's only thanks to funding from Ireland's National Parks and Wildlife Service that BSBI has been able to run these events, and we'd like to thank them very much for this great opportunity. 

Several ID resources for aquatic plants can be found on the BSBI website. On the Identification page, you will find a stonewort key by Nick Stewart and a link to a new 'Vegetative Key to Wetland Plants', developed by John Poland in conjunction with the Freshwater Habitats Trust; the videos page has links to Botany Bill's ID videos for tasselweeds and hornworts as well as Claudia Ferguson-Smyth's Potamogeton epihydrus video; the Plant Crib page has cribs for pondweeds, waterworts, floating water-plantains, yellow water-lilies and more - take a look! And if you've really got the aquatics bug, there are BSBI Handbooks for pondweeds and water-starworts. Lots on offer for the aquatics afficianado!

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