Pembrokeshire’s Traditional Landscape.
In the winter months you can clearly see stone or earth banks carving up the countryside. These ‘Cloddiau’ define field boundaries and are a distinctive characteristic of our county. Some of these date back to medieval times and have strong cultural, historic and wildlife importance. This is why Pembrokeshire Biodiversity Partnership has launched an action plan to help protect them.
Most people know that hedgerows form a vital transport route for wildlife. In Pembrokeshire we’re fortunate in having banks full of flowering plants which often support hedges on top, doubling their interest for wildlife. The action plan describes the wildlife linked with field boundaries as well as explaining how best to look after them including what you can do to help.
Farmers are being encouraged to manage their field boundaries sympathetically for wildlife through the new single farm payment scheme and other agri-environmental schemes. It’s best to cut hedges in January, once every three years, and there are lots of traditional techniques that can be used which benefit wildlife. Training courses are being run to demonstrate some methods of hedge laying, coppicing and alternatives to annual flailing. Butterfly Conservation are running a free course at the National Botanic Gardens on Tuesday 24th January, demonstrating techniques which can be used to manage blackthorn hedges for Brown Hairstreak butterflies. Ring Butterfly Conservation Wales for further details 01792 642 972.