A team of nature experts smashed their target for recording species at Stroud’s unique Nature Reserve.
The Green Spaces team, along with the support of experts, aimed to record upwards of 300 species including birds, mammals, plants, fungi and invertebrates over a 30-hour period.
The experts achieved a total of 500 species, including 150 not previously recorded.
The event, part of Stroud Nature Festival, also provided a great opportunity for the public to enjoy the nature reserve and learn more about the myriad species that it supports.
A number of walks were led by both the invited experts and the Green Spaces team which were very well received.
Stroud District Councillor Simon Pickering led a popular night-time bat walk, which identified four species of bat. Bob and Sue Smith recorded a good selection of moths from traps that the team put out overnight and led visitors on butterfly walks.
A highlight of the weekend was the discovery of a thriving population of Villa cingulata (Downland Bee fly), which had only been recorded a handful of times in previous decades and was even at one time thought to be extinct.
The last time a register of species was done was 2003.
The cemetery was created in the 1850s after other burial grounds in the town had become dangerous to health. William Lewis, a pauper from the neighbouring Union Workhouse, was the first to be interred in September 1856.
The vegetation is kept long during the summer to encourage wildlife to flourish. This creates a rich array of wildflowers including oxeye daisies, orchids and vetches, beneficial to bees, butterflies and some rare insects.