BIAZA Conservation Grant
We are pleased to announce that we are now accepting applications for the £5000 BIAZA Conservation Grant, 2017!
This grant is available to support conservation projects carried out by BIAZA collections. The winner will be announced at the AGM on 18 May at The Deep.
For details of eligibility and an application form click here.
Examples of eligible work includes:
• Projects that address research priorities of rare and threatened species and habitats including ecology and human-wildlife conflict
• Projects which aim to increase awareness of ecology, conservation and environmental issues in local communities, and capacity building of people on how to develop and carry out sustainable management practices in those communities
• Projects which aim to design and implement conservation education programmes, with strategic conservation objectives linked to threatened species and habitats
• Projects which aim to improve protection of wild habitats and species
Deadline for applications is 5pm Monday 27 February 2017
BIAZA's last Conservation Grant of £5000 was awarded in 2014 the to Isle of Wight Zoo for its work with the reddish buff moth. This supported a collabrative project involving BIAZA members Isle of Wight Zoo, Amazon World and Seaview Wildlife who are now working together alongside Butterfly Conservation, English Nature and Hampshire and Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust to help conserve the Reddish Buff Moth.
The reddish buff moth (Acosmetia caliginosa) is one of the UK’s most rare native species, listed as a priority species within the UK Biodiversity Action plan (UKBAP). Its range has always been restricted to the Isle of Wight and southern Hampshire, but in recent years that range has decreased further still, and despite a number of unsuccessful reintroduction attempts, the moth is now only found in one site on the Isle of Wight.
In May 2014 zoo staff made an initial visit to this site and met local moth expert Ian Fletcher, who explained what had been happening with the population over the past few years and helped the team to identify saw-wort Serratula tinctoria,the preferred food plant of the reddish buff larvae. In July staff from all three zoos took part in a workshop led by field ecologist Martin Harvey to develop the skills needed to carry out larval surveys using vacuum suction of saw-wort plants to establish numbers of larvae present (using a sort of huge mechanically-powered pooter!).
Long-term monitoring is now being carried out by the trainined zoo staff, with surveying at the known site for both larvae and adult moths (by moth trapping). Habitat surveys have also been carried out to identify other sites on the Isle of Wight which may have the potential to support the Reddish Buff moth or which may be suitable locations for future moth introductions.
Survey results have been collated and reported to the site managers of the known site, and to Butterfly Conservation who oversee the UKBAP.