OPAL web editor's blog

OPAL Tree Health Survey – The first two years

Why study tree pests and diseases?

Two years ago, trees and their pests and diseases were in the news. Chalara dieback of ash had been found in the UK in the previous autumn (2012), an event of such magnitude that the Government even convened meetings of its Cabinet Office Briefing Rooms (COBR) committee, which is reserved for instances of international, national or regional crises. Never before had it met for a tree disease.

Nature lovers can now get involved with citizen science across the United Kingdom

From the 18th May, people of all ages from across the whole of the UK can now contribute to scientific research in their local area on everything from invasive species to environmental quality, through the Open Air Laboratories programme (OPAL). The expansion has been made possible by a £3 million grant from the Big Lottery Fund.
 

Scientists to investigate why people submit survey results

OPAL scientists in York have launched a study exploring why people do – or do not – submit their results after taking part in an OPAL survey.

The study, which is being carried out by our team at the Stockholm Environment Institute at the University of York, is being funded by Defra.

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Capture Devon and Cornwall’s wildlife at its best

Photographers are being challenged to showcase the flora and fauna of south west England in a competition opening today.

Launched by OPAL South West and the Plymouth Woodland Project, both part of Plymouth University’s outreach programme, the competition will run until the end of August.

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£1.4m lottery grant for pollinator project

A programme to help schools and communities protect pollinating insects has been awarded £1.4 million by the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF).

The Polli:Nation project is being developed by Learning through Landscapes in partnership with leading nature organisations including OPAL.

The activity of pollinating insects such as bees and butterflies has been valued at £430 million to UK agriculture each year, but these insects are in severe decline.

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Your Air Survey results – what have we discovered?

Where in the UK are nitrogen-loving lichens more common? Can the public identify lichens? What have you helped us learn about air quality?

These questions and more have been tackled by OPAL scientists studying results submitted for the OPAL Air Survey.

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