The Gaia Trust's Chark Moor site has been included in the new Mid Cornwall Moors Site of Special Scientific Interest confirmed by Natural England, the government's nature conservation body, on November 15th.
Wesley Smyth, manager of Devon, Cornwall and Isles of Scilly team in Natural England, said:
This rich and diverse landscape of Mid Cornwall is home to an array of rare plants and insects, alongside one of the highest densities of willow tit breeding pairs in England. That’s why we’ve designated this area as a Site of Special Scientific Interest, recognising its vital contribution to our natural heritage and helping its precious wildlife thrive for generations to come.
Matt Edworthy, Director of the Gaia Trust says "we are privileged to have our Chark Moor site included in the new SSSI. We are managing it to encourage the rare Marsh Fritillary butterfly which is currently found nearby, but not at Chark. We look forward to seeing this wonderful species return"
In May 2017 a bat detector at Home Farm Marsh recorded the ultra-sonic calls of up to nine species of bat that frequent the site. More
Hoping to catch a glimpse of ospreys using the new nest pole, the Gaia Trust has installed a solar-powered webcam at Home Farm Marsh and large viewing screen at Fremington Quay Cafe. More.
It is with great sadness that the Trustees have to announce that Jenni Thomson – the Chairman and founder of the Gaia Trust lost her brave and very courageous battle with cancer on Friday 11th November 2016. She bore her illness with great strength never complaining and working on promoting the Trust’s future almost to the end – it seemed to give her great comfort.
Jenni was responsible for the birth of The Gaia Trust, and was its first director until her retirement in December 2006. She was also Chairman of the South West Environmental Protection Group and the Community Projects Trust, and was a County Councillor and member of the National Rivers Advisory Committee. In 1985, Jenni won the European Conservation Award for Industry. She was an organic farmer, non-executive director of a National Health Service Trust, a member of the Freedom of Information Act Tribunal, the Consumer Council for Water, and a Millennium Fellow.
Jenni has left the Gaia Trust in very good heart and now the Director and Trustees will work tirelessly to achieve the vision that she had for its future.
"I was pleased with the work that you have carried out to increase the areas of standing and seasonal water on the HK10 fields. I would be happy for more scrapes to be created"
It is reassuring that we are showing positive results through our Higher Level Stewardship Management Agreement.
Following an exhaustive options appraisal, the Board of the Gaia Trust has decided to dispose of all the land and buildings that it owns at Welcombe in North Devon. These were transferred from the Yarner Trust when it was wound up in January 2015. The disposal will be carried out in accordance with the rules by which a Registered Charity must operate.
You can download the press release about the decision below
Newly cleared scrapes at Home Farm Marsh will provide valuable laying-up habitat for wading birds from the nearby Taw/Torridge Estuary and be a magnet for insects such as dragonflies. Thanks to Gaia Trust volunteer Geoff for getting the ball rolling by raising money through a sponsored cycle ride and to the Tarka Country Trust who provided the 50% of the funding.