The Brecon Beacons National Park Visitor Centre at Libanus and Craig-y-nos Country Park in the Upper Swansea Valley have both been successful in their bid to become Bee Friendly.
Together they join other organisations and communities across the nation taking action to make Wales the first pollinator friendly country in the World.
The Bee Friendly initiative is the ‘Action Plan for Pollinators’ Task Force’s scheme funded by the Welsh Government to help all pollinators, not just bees, that are in decline. Assisted by Bee Friendly Champion and Brecon Beacons Local Nature Partnership Implementation Officer, Maria Golightly, the managers of the National Park Authority owned sites acted on a series of goals, that need to be maintained, to achieve the Bee Friendly status.
The first goal, providing pollinator-friendly food sources, saw volunteers plant native wildflowers and woodland flowering plants at both locations. The second, providing places for insect pollinators to live, included building a bug hotel and planting a native hedgerow at the Visitor Centre. Whilst at the Country Park existing beehives continue to thrive and the wildflower meadow attracts foraging wild bees. The requirements for the third goal, freedom from pesticides and herbicides, is one that the National Park is already committed to at both locations. And the fourth and final goal requires involving communities and informing people why pollinators are being helped through site signage. The Authority will also engage the 5,000 young learners who attend the Visitor Centre and Country Park every year through their Education Programme, in learning how to be Bee Friendly and why it matters.
Mr James Marsden, Authority Landscape and Biodiversity Member Champion said,
“Gaining Bee Friendly Status at two of our flagship visitor sites is another step in aiding Nature Recovery across the National Park as part of a wider, integrated action programme. Pollinators including bees, wasps, butterflies and moths are an essential part of our natural environment and we are committed to undertake action to halt and reverse their decline.”
Wayne Lewis, Commercial Manager, Brecon Beacons National Park Authority added,
“We will continue to deliver on all four Bee Friendly themes at both the locations and have plans in place to progress on them further in the future. We hope that the changes we have made to become Bee Friendly will benefit both pollinators and the well-being of visitors to the National Park Visitor Centre and Craig-y-nos Country Park.”