Natural Englad: the mosaic approach, managing habitats for species

Natural England has recently published a selection of guides for The Mosaic Approach; a key component of species conservation strategy and delivery of Biodiversity 2020. Natural England is embedding the approach within conservation delivery mechanisms and would encourage others to do likewise in order to protect and enhance England’s species.

The Mosaic Approach: Managing Habitats for Species introductory presentation and accompanying guides for selected habitats are now available to access online.

The guides encompass:

  • Introduction to the Mosaic Approach
  • Woodland
  • Brownfield/Open Mosaic Habitats
  • Lowland Grasslands
  • Lowland Heathland
  • Salt marsh

Additional Mosaic Approach guides covering rivers and streams and wetland habitats will be available shortly with an Upland guide to follow later. However, the introductory slideshow talks through how the approach could be applied to any habitat.

The Mosaic Approach is about integrating the requirements of species into habitat management, ensuring that our plants and wildlife have the places they need to live and reproduce.

Most species require a range of elements within a site or a wider landscape in order to complete their life cycle.  Many of these elements, such as small patches of bare ground, tall flower-rich vegetation, or scattered trees and scrub, are often absent from the English landscape, and even from some of our most important wildlife sites. This has contributed to serious declines in many species, with some now close to extinction.

Providing a mosaic of these elements in the landscape would go a long way towards meeting the needs of many of these species, enabling them to thrive once again and, in turn, would help to deliver a key aim of Biodiversity 2020. The Mosaic Approach has been embedded into the development of the new agri-environment scheme design.