Conservation inspiration: habitat care

Natterjack numbers are jumping thanks to habitat help from park

Rare natterjack toads are growing in number with help from a Wales holiday park and volunteers</span data-recalc-dims=

THE DAVID BELLAMY Conservation Award Scheme encourages parks to protect the Gronant and Talacre Dune – a designated Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI).

‘The dunes here are of specific ecological importance,’ said Jack Parry, the park ranger. ‘It is the only area in Wales toad and of one of the country’s rarest reptiles, the elusive sand lizard.’

A structured five-year management plan for the dunes is in place and is largely carried out by Jack and volunteers from local environmental charities. The park also has partnership agreements with local authorities who provide advice, volunteer help and resources such as machinery and tooling.

Throughout the year, Jack and his team carry out works to take its course.

‘One of the challenges we face is people pressure on the site,’ said Jack. ‘However, we have turned this to get them involved with the habitat work by running regular events.’

According to the people who visit Presthaven Sands, who know that they are experiencing one of the most biodiverse and important wildlife areas in the country.

‘There has been a 100% rise in breeding natterjacks in the last 12 months, record numbers for breeding little terns in 2017 and sightings of a good number of sand lizards,’ said Jack. ‘There is also an annual display of beautiful wildflowers for guests to enjoy, including orchids and sea holly.’

Seeking inspiration for new ways in which your park can help protect the natural world? In these articles, Rufus Bellamy, head of the David Bellamy Conservation Award Scheme, highlights some of the latest initiatives being taken. For more ideas, visit