Camlad Valley WIldlife Group
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Have you seen a Dark Green Fritillary?

Please contact Rob Rowe ASAP if you see any Dark Green Fritillary butterflies in the Stepping Stones/Shropshire Hills AONB area.
You can reach Rob by email at rob@robrowe.co.uk or by phone on 01588 640174.
For more information on Dark Green Fritillaries, follow this link.

Stepping Stone news

Woodrows and hedgerows 

The photo above shows some of the new fencing which has been installed at Barns Farm near Asterton.  The c.10m wide strips along the field boundaries will be planted up with a mix of native tree and shrub species to form a wide, scrubby corridor for ecological connectivity and habitat creation. We are calling these ‘woodrows’.

Stock will initially be excluded, but in 5-10 years time when the trees are big enough we’re hoping to occasionally run cattle through as a form of agroforestry and a management tool.  With this in mind we will include palatable species like aspen and willow in there, along with plenty of hazel, hawthorn, holly, and other species with high wildlife value.  The planting will be densest near the fences, thinning towards the middle of the woodrow to allow cattle to push their way through it in the future.

In addition to these woodrows we will also be planting hundreds of metres of more traditional narrow hedgerows.

Can you help?  We hope all the planting can be done by volunteers like yourself!  You can view planting dates and sign up via this link.  

Can you help the fastest declining UK bird?

We are looking for volunteers who want to learn how to survey for willow tits in south Shropshire.  This is part of our Species Recovery work to help willow tit populations recover.  An important step is to understand more about where they are found.  This will help us focus conservation efforts.

You will need to commit to attend two training sessions:
1. Online ‘classroom’ session on 20th Jan covering background and survey methodology.
2. Field session on 10th Feb, where you will practice the survey techniques in the field.

Prior experience
None needed.  However it will help if you have some experience of bird identification, especially using their songs and calls.  Willow tit surveys rely on identifying their calls, so it is essential that you are able to hear bird calls.

Places are limited and we need to act quickly to safeguard the future of this lovely bird,  so please only sign up if you are committed to undertaking both training sessions and becoming a ‘fully-fledged’ willow tit surveyor.

To register your interest in becoming a willow tit surveyor, click here.

Sandscapes Project

The Stepping Stones team recently joined colleagues on the Sandscapes project, another landscape scale conservation project based in Shropshire.  The project operates out of the Dudmaston property and aims to create and link patches of heathland and sandy habitat across Shropshire, Staffordshire and Worcestershire.

Our task on the day was to help plant hundreds of heather plugs which have been grown from seed harvested on the Long Mynd.  It’s a fascinating project involving lots of collaboration and corporation – you can read more here.

Find out more about our veteran trees

National Trust colleague (and full-time tree enthusiast!) Tom Shuttleworth is giving a talk on veteran trees as part of Bishop Castle’s ‘Going Wild in BC’ winter talk series.

Pine marten crowdfunder

Many of you will know we have worked with the Shropshire Pine Marten Project over the past couple of years to expand the network of camera traps in the project area.  The camera traps in south Shropshire have provided valuable information on the distribution of this special local species, and helped decide where den boxes are installed.

The Pine Marten Project has just launched a new crowdfunder campaign to raise the funds needed to buy new camera traps to replace faulty and broken cameras and collect data from new areas of woodland where pine martens might be. You can find our more here.

Monday 18th December – holly management 
10am – 3pm, Medlicott
Get festive with mince pies and a seasonally appropriate task!  We will be working with a local farmer to help clear some holly from the woodland floor to encourage ground flora to develop.  Grazing will shortly be excluded from this woodland to encourage woodland flowers, however currently holly is very dominant across the woodland floor, creating a lot of shade, so we’ll clear a bit of space.  Feel free to take the cut holly away for festive decorations!
Sign up here.

Hedge planting in 2024
We’ve got various dates finalised for our hedge planting sessions at barns Farm in January and February.  This is part of the hedgerow creation work being funded by Natural England’s species recovery grant.
You can view dates and book your place via this link


About us

The Camlad Valley Community Wildlife Group (CVCWG) was set up to help local people help local wildlife. The group provides a chance to learn and get that little bit closer to some of our most fascinating plants and animals.

Participating in the group provides an opportunity to find out about the distinctive wildlife of the Camlad Valley and the area surrounding Corndon Hill and to share your local wildlife knowledge. You will receive free expert training and a chance to engage in local opportunities to perform valuable conservation work and have fun at the same time.

An annual report is issued each year, summarising the activities and accomplishments of the past twelve months and laying out plans for the forthcoming period. You can read our reports here.

Alongside other local wildlife groups, we participate in an annual survey of Curlew and Lapwing, and there are projects to protect and enhance diversity of the local flora.

Area of Interest

The geographical extent of the CVCWG’s activities is shown on the map adjacent (please click to enlarge), expressed in terms of tetrads (the 2 km x 2 km squares used in surveying many types of wildlife). 

The area includes Churchstoke, Hyssington, Priest Weston and Chirbury, so lies partly in England and partly in Wales. As a result, we have ties not only with the other Shropshire Wildlife Groups but also Powys-based bodies such as the Montgomeryshire Wildlife Trust.

More information

To join the Camlad Valley CWG or to get more information, please contact:

Sandy Scott (Secretary) or Peter Fenner (Website Minder) at camladvalley@shropscwgs.org.uk

More information on joining

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Area of Interest

What we do

Barn owl


We want to hear of any Barn Owl sightings so that we can erect nesting boxes where they will be most likely to be used. Find out more about how you can help.

Curlew Surveys

Although we must of course abide by the Government’s instructions, it doesn’t mean that our efforts to monitor curlew numbers have to cease entirely. Find out more about how you can help.


Click through to view or download our annual reports from 2014 -2020.

Here you can find out about our findings during the year and what we hope to achieve in future.

See what we’ve been up to

Past Events

Fungi walk at Roundton

On Sunday 16th October, the group returned once again to the beautiful Roundton Nature Reserve near Churchstoke.  This time, we were on the hunt for fungi. The remarkably dry year so far had meant some fungi species were quite late in their usual development, but...

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Plant walk at Roundton

The Group was recently able to host its first event since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic, a walk exploring the plant life on the Roundton Nature Reserve near Churchstoke. Numbers on the walk were limited to minimise the Covid risk, but the small group who...

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2020 AGM

We held our AGM at Churchstoke Community Hall on 12th February.  After the requisite AGM admin covered the Group’s Chair, Mary Napper, we had reports from Leo Smith and Rob Rowe on the respective activities of the Bird and Plant Groups. After a refreshment break, we...

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Interested in joining?

Anyone who lives or works in the area, or has an interest in its wildlife, and who wants to actively contribute to local knowledge and conservation, is welcome. Membership is free.

Enthusiasm and interest in the area are far more important than specialist knowledge. Group members are assisted by experts in the relevant fields: they provide training to anyone who wants it on such topics as species identification, how to carry out a simple surveys and how to record the results. Survey work is easy and enjoyable, and members will learn new skills.


By joining Camlad Valley Community Wildlife Group, we will email you with information on our events and activities. For more information on how we process your data, please read our Privacy Policy.


The Camlad Valley Community Wildlife Group received financial support from the Stiperstones & Corndon Hill Country Landscape Partnership Scheme, which is funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund. The lead organisation for the Scheme is the Shropshire Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) Partnership, and the Scheme is hosted by Shropshire Council. Please see www.stiperstonesandcorndon.co.uk