Section 26
Chapter 25,056

Nature conservation and nature reserves. Report of committee

British, E.ological Society

Jour Ecol 32(1): 45-82


Accession: 025055233

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Most of Britain is farmland, but there still remain considerable tracts of vegetation which are "wild" in the sense that the plants composing them are native to the country. The most nearly undisturbed areas are above 2000 ft., and along the sea coast. The only way to safeguard and maintain such tracts as can and should be preserved is to set them aside and control them more or less closely. The formation of "nature reserves" in which scientific work on natural and semi-natural communities can be carried on will not only advance an important branch of biological science which can be applied to the management and control of the natural resources of the country, but may contribute to the success of National Parks through development of public knowledge and appreciation. While the general method of preserving plant life is adequate for the small animals which accompany it, it is not so for the larger birds and mammals, in which case the extreme complexity of factors involves the necessity for research and positive and active management directed toward the maintenance of optimum density and distribution. The committee recommends the establishment of a National Wildlife Service embracing the whole field of the native flora and fauna, to carry on continuous research and empowered to select and supervise National Nature Reserves.

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