Lichens are an important part of many ecosystems.

The medieval park at Nettlecombe is a Site of Special Scientific Interest for its lichens. This course provides an opportunity for participants to recognise and identify common lichens that are used as indicators of air quality and those that are associated with veteran trees in ancient woodlands and parklands.

Participants will learn to recognise features of lichens with a handbook designed for the course, to use FSC guides and simple keys to identify common species in the field, those used as indicators of air quality and be introduced to lichens of ancient woodland and parkland in Somerset.

This course includes:

  • An introduction to lichens and the terminology used in identification.
  • How to use x10 hand lens and dissecting microscopes.
  • Basic lichen chemistry using spot tests.
  • An introduction to lichens as indicators of air quality and ancient woodland and parkland.

We anticipate that this course will run with between 8 and 16 participants.

There will be maximum walking of less than 1 mile.

If you are 18-25, you can get £50 off this course thanks to the Generation Green project. Click here to find out more and to get your voucher code.

Tutor: Pat Wolseley

Pat Wolseley is a lichenologist and past president of the British Lichen Society who lives at Nettlecombe but continues to work at the Natural History Museum as a part time Scientific Associate. She has worked on lichens as indicators of environmental conditions at home and in the tropics and was instrumental in the development of the national OPAL air quality project which used lichens as indicators of air quality across the UK. More recently she has put together a checklist of lichens of Somerset, together with Brian and Sandy Coppins, which is in press and which we will use on the course to check distribution of lichen communities in Somerset.

Please note, the fee is for tuition and refreshments only.

If you would like to book accommodation, lunch and an evening meal at FSC Nettlecombe Court, please email [email protected]

Example Timetable

Saturday:

Classroom-based learning including an introduction to lichens and to characters used in identification and practice exploring lichens using x10 hand lens, dissecting microscopes and a handbook prepared for the course. After lunch, we will explore the trees around the centre and use the FSC guide to identify lichens on the twigs.

Sunday:

A brief introduction to lichens of ancient woodland and parkland before a field visit to find species present at Nettlecombe.

If you have booked accommodation at the centre, please arrive between 8:30am and 9:45am on arrival day, allowing time to settle into your room before the course begins.

If you are a non-resident, please arrive by 9:45am.

The course will end at 17:00 pm on the last day and we ask that rooms are vacated by 9.30am.

What's Included

  • Expert Tuition
  • Free Wi-Fi
  • Hot and Cold Drinks
  • In Course Transport

Bursaries and Subsidies

If you are 18-25, you can get £50 off this course thanks to the Generation Green project. Click here to find out more and to get your voucher code.

Before You Attend

What to Bring

  • A x10 magnification hand-lens.
  • Any identification books you already own*.
  • It is essential to bring suitable outdoor clothing and footwear.

*Guides are available to purchase from the Centre.

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