On Tuesday this week our local group of the Somerset Wildlife Trust organised a talk to explain to members how we can do this.
I was interested to listen to an excellent presentation of the on line recording system developed by Somerset Environmental Records Centre.( SERC) I followed up the same evening by entering my sighting of a Orange Tip butterfly in my own garden two days ago. I expect many people have seen them recently. After a couple of tries I have entered this sighting onto the Somerset Records. Not remarkable but as was apparent from questions a common reaction to being urged to report common sightings is why report something which is thought off as not worth the effort.
For me the reason is the same as led us to start our own local village system which you can see in operation if you visit Curry Rivel Community Website. Use this link :http://www.curryrivel.org.uk A map is shown with the Parish boundary marked using Google Earth maps and on the map are symbols to represent the reports we have receive, their location and description of what was seen. We set that system up because of our interest in wildlife and because as on of small group of volunteers said," if we want to protect out wildlife then we first need to know what wildlife is currently resident in our area!"
What I learnt form our talk was that SERC have given us the means to pass on our sightings so that they can be " officially" recorded centrally for Somerset where they are available for planning departments , developers and local councils who are considering housing and other projects.
So its a lot more than just local curiosity and interest and I hope we will be able to use this tool and well as keeping our local initiative going in parallel.
SERC web site and the way to make our reports are clearly shown at this web address link: http://www.somerc.com/who-are-serc/
To see the Facebook page for our local area group of the Somerset Wildlife Trust try this link:http:://www.somersetwildlife.org/Heart_of_the_Level