Ecologists bid to create more hay meadows

Ecologists are looking to create more hay meadows across the West Midlands and Staffordshire in a bid to preserve wildlife and natural habitats.

Dr Lynn Besenyei, a senior lecturer in the Faculty of Science and Engineering at the University of Wolverhampton, undertakes research into meadow creation. Along with her team and students, she is creating replicas which will be managed traditionally, as they have been over millennia.

She is keen to see these habitats preserved for posterity and has already created over 20 new hay meadows in and around the wider Midlands area, working with wildlife organisations, transforming derelict sites and creating vital green spaces in urban areas.

Dr Besenyei is looking for landowners who would like to establish, or restore, hay meadows and may not be aware of support available.

“Our hay meadows are comprised of a wide variety of plant species and an equally diverse array of animal species. Interestingly each one is a slightly different mix of species from the next. Sadly, most examples of this iconic habitat have been lost since 1945 and it is now important to preserve the remaining ones for future generations.

“Hay meadows are important for biodiversity and are a haven for different species of wild flowers such as ox-eye daisies, yellow rattle and black knapweed, as well as helping other wildlife such as bees, hoverflies and butterflies which have all been badly affected by widespread use of insecticides.  

“It is possible to create new meadows simply by using green hay from an existing one and maintaining it through traditional management techniques.”

Dr Besenyei will be at the University’s Stafford hub in Staffordshire Place, Tipping Street, on Monday, April 9, for a free talk on creating hay meadows.

To book a place at the public lecture, call in to 2a Staffordshire Place, call 07989 697026 or email uwis.enquiries@wlv.ac.uk.

ENDS

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