Friday, 5 July 2013

Rare Southern Damselfly habitat in Wales given boost

Habitat for Rare Dragonflies Saved

July 2013. An area of habitat for the rare Southern Damselfly has been saved thanks to the combined effort of several conservation organisations, the landowner and local farmers. The endangered Southern Damselfly is at risk of extinction in this part of the Preseli Special Areas of Conservation (SAC) in Pembrokeshire which is one of its traditional strongholds in Europe. Projects like this that maintain its habitat are vital for the species survival in the area.

Natural Resources Wales' Senior Conservation Officer, Jon Hudson explains 'this is an area with several specialist wetland features including streams, bogs, flushes and pools. It is the confluence of several streams and an important access area for livestock, graziers and walkers to the common'. The area was at risk because access to the common was becoming difficult and the streams were at risk of getting choked up. This essential work has created clear access to the common for walkers and graziers whilst ensuring that the sensitive wetland features are maintained.

Rare throughout Europe
This project will ensure that one of the small areas across the common where the endangered Southern Damselfly is found is maintained into the future. This species is rare throughout Europe and protected by law both in the UK and Europe. The BDS Conservation Officer, Claire Install says ‘this matchstick-sized blue and black damselfly has very specific habitat requirements and is currently under threat through changes in land management. Projects like this are vital if we want to continue to see this species in Pembrokeshire'.

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