In January we asked NatureSpot members to help us fill the gaps in our records. In spite of the dire weather last month, a number of people have already responded to our appeal, and the gaps are starting to close, but please don't stop - we need year round records covering the whole of VC55. Ben Devine, Conservation Officer with the Leicestershire & Rutland Wildlife Trust, looked at all the records submitted in 2017 for the Trust's network of nature reserves. There are no prizes for guessing what the top two recorded reserves were, although you may struggle a bit more with third place.
Coming in at a storming number one with a total of 3,159 records was the Trust's flagship reserve at Rutland Water - the one even CountryFile has heard of! In second place was Charnwood Lodge with 1,180 records, thanks to the dedicated recording group who work at this site. In a slightly distant third place was Lea Meadows with 358 records.
The big surprise was that for three of the Trust's reserves not a single record was submitted in the whole of 2017. These were Great Merrible Wood, Lyddington Meadow and Syston Lake. Although Lyddington and Syston are smaller and less well-known locations, Great Merrible was a big surprise (although it has to be said that I submitted a couple of 2017 records that missed the boundary of this reserve by only 50 metres! And I wasn't the only one). So please carry on filling the gaps, and if you're wondering where to go for a day out, please put these three reserves on your list and let us know what's going on there by submitting your records.