Latest News

Countryside Survey contributes to ‘State of the Natural Environment’ report

May 2008

Natural England has recently published its ‘State of the Natural Environment 2008’ report, which for the first time brings together evidence about the current state of our natural environment and how it underpins our wellbeing and prosperity. By integrating this evidence, Natural England aims to provide an up-to-date resource for informing policies, priorities and decisions that may effect the natural environment. The report is intended for high-level strategic use, thereby complimenting the more detailed and scientific information provided by Countryside Survey.

Top skills of Freshwaters team recognised

February 2008

Three Countryside Survey researchers have recently been awarded the prestigious freshwater macroinvertebrate species-level Identification Qualification (IdQs).
Tracy Corbin, Dr. James Pretty and Helen Vincent, who are all Centre for Ecology and Hydrology (CEH) staff, exceeded the challenging 90% pass rate, whilst Tracy achieved a perfect 100%. All three are currently identifying animals sampled from headwater streams across Britain as part of last summer’s Countryside Survey.

Land Cover Map - field reconnaissance completed and analysis underway

February 2008

The team behind the Land Cover Map (LCM), which forms one of the two main strands of Countryside Survey, has successfully completed its fieldwork and is now pressing on with data processing and analysis. The resulting dataset will be a world-leading product showing the stock and distribution of land cover and Broad Habitats* across the UK at a ‘field-by-field’ scale (features larger than 0.5 ha, or 50m square).

Field Survey now completed

November 2007

The survey teams have now finally hung up their waterproofs following a successful summer in the field. Survey was completed in 94% of all sites originally targeted – an outstanding achievement in light of the unforeseen challenges that arose during the course of the fieldwork; notably flooding and the outbreak of foot and mouth disease, which meant that some sites could not be accessed. In total, 591 1km squares were surveyed across Great Britain, making this the biggest Countryside Survey to date (the previous highest total being 508 squares in 1998).