Nature-friendly gardens and allotments to be mapped by charity

A new project to map nature-friendly land including gardens and allotments on the Isle of Man has been launched.

Landowners, managers and custodians have been asked to take part in a survey about the nature on their patch.

The Nature Recovery Network is a joint venture between Manx Wildlife Trust and Unesco Biosphere Isle of Man to map efforts to boost biodiversity.

It forms part of the trust’s goal to see 30% of the island’s land and sea managed for nature by 2030.

Areas being targeted includes gardens of any size, allotments or other land, and land manged within businesses, schools, public buildings, churches, private healthcare establishments.

‘Wildlife friendly plots’

Those who take part will be sent scores for their contributions to food, shelter, water, connectivity and natural solutions, and offered tips on how to improve their area.

Areas that score 50% in the survey will be added to the map, which is expected to expand over time.

Farmland separately assessed as part of the Isle of Man government’s Agri-Environment Scheme is not currently being included.

MWT’s Graham Makepeace-Warne said the charity was “committed to remaining at the heart of the drive to protect wildlife and connect people to nature”.

In time the project could link larger areas, including conservation work on farms and nature reserves, with a “network of wildlife friendly plots of private land” to span the whole island, he said.

“This is a fantastic step forwards in collaborative working and bringing people together to create change that could boost biodiversity and bring wildlife back,” Mr Makepeace-Warne said.

Michelle Haywood MHK of the Department of Environment, Food and Agriculture said the “positive actions of every landowner, manager and custodian contribute to creating space for nature and wildlife”.

The survey can be accessed online.

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