The Wiltshire Landscape Rangers
Our Wiltshire Landscape Rangers are a dedicated team, working out in all weathers, at all times of the year and their passion for caring for the environment is fundamental to their work.
"I love watching the seasons change on all of the sites I manage. The amazing frosts and clear blue skies in the winter at Figsbury Ring, the colours of the leaves on the parkland trees and bushes full of berries at Lockeridge Dene in autumn, the call of the skylarks at Windmill Hill, Avebury in summer and the first cowslips poking through the ground in the wildflower meadow at The Coombes in spring. I really enjoy working with the volunteers doing practical tasks on site – whether a fiddly job like fixing a gate, scrub clearing or removing vast fields of ragwort, it's great to see the site transform before our eyes with the help of so many wonderful people."
"As a ranger it’s a real pleasure to look after some really special places in the Wiltshire landscape. I get a great sense of fulfilment from working alongside volunteers on work such as cutting scrub or mowing barrows to maintain and protect them. Working on projects to improve the nature conservation and appearance of the places you look after is really motivating. Seeing the changing seasons and the wildlife that comes around each year on the chalk grassland lifts the spirits - my personal favourites are listening for the sound of skylarks, the sight of Adonis blue and marsh fritillary butterflies and the amazing flowers that thrive on the downland. The views, both natural and historic, are incredible."
"Avebury is a special site for the archaeological and historical value, however, you don't have to go far from the stone circle to see that there's lots of wildlife and nature to see as well. As a ranger I'm out in all weathers and in all seasons, which gives a wonderful perspective. I love seeing the deer appear each winter near the avenue, or watching the hawks using the stones as a vantage point - my favourite conservation job is to undertake butterfly surveys. One of my major tasks is to look after Avebury for the visitors, maintaining access and good presentation, I get great satisfaction seeing a path or patch of grass before and after I've mown it or seeing an area of scrub cleared - and who doesn't love driving around in a tractor?"
"I thoroughly enjoy looking after Pepperbox Hill. The challenge of looking after a broad range of different habitats including species rich chalk grassland, mixed-age scrub and mature woodland all in one place is very satisfying. The small but very dedicated groups of volunteers who help to maintain these habitats are a pleasure to work with. Some of the highlights of my year are seeing the arrival of the pedigree Shetland cattle and calves in spring and the results of their conservation grazing throughout the summer, the sea of pink and purple flowers from the pyramidal orchids and wild marjoram during the summer and the stunning rosy pink bullfinches that are easy to spot amongst the woodland scrub during the winter months."