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Taking action

Generic Action intro
Generic Action intro
1. Site management
2. Habitat protection
3. Species protection
4. Ecological Monitoring
5. Biological recording
6. Communications
7. Funding
8. Built Structures

Habitat action plans
Round 1

Chalk Grassland
Round 2
Acid Grassland
Tidal Thames
Private Gardens
Parks & Squares
Round 3

Species action plans
Round 1

Water Vole
Grey Heron
Peregrine Falcon
Sand Martin
Black Redstart
House Sparrow
Stag Beetle
Tower Mustard
Round 2
Black Poplar

House Martin
Humble Bumble
Exotic Flora

Communication -
Planning Guides
  Communication planning guidelines

1. Setting Communications Objectives, 2. Key Messages, 3. Target Audiences
4. Communications Methods, 5. Aids to Communications Planning
6. Cost of Communications, 7. Monitoring and Evaluation, 8. Case Studies

Communications Plan Case Studies
(All case study material supplied by the London Wildlife Trust)

Case Study 1: Stag beetle Biodiversity Action Plan

A. Stag beetle survey
To map stag beetle locations in London;
To raise public awareness of the threats to stag beetles and how they can be helped.

To gain 3000 replies to survey (including website responses). This would be enough to give an accurate representation to map the distribution of stag beetles across London;
Press coverage in every borough within three weeks of sending out the press release to gain an even distribution across London;
To receive at least 5000 phone calls from the public requesting information about the survey within May and June when stag beetles are most active;
To involve 100 London schools in the survey.

Target audience
General public; gardeners; children.

Press releases sent to local papers, gardening papers, TV and radio giving details of the survey, the threats to stag beetles and how to get involved, giving a contact telephone number to phone in for a form;
Educational posters sent to schools in London, with information about stag beetles, the survey and examples of how to help stag beetles in their school grounds;
The survey was put in an interactive form on the website.

Monitoring the number of survey responses that are input on to a database;
Count the number of articles in local papers to assess coverage;
Monitor number of telephone calls asking for information;
Assess the database information to monitor the number of schools that participated.

B. Stag beetle habitat management
To educate people that dead wood is a valuable habitat for wildlife.

To get 25 people to attend a training course;
To get 10 articles in papers that contain the key messages during May and June when stag beetles are most active;
To get at least one article in a parks service magazine during May and June when most stag beetles are most active;
To increase the area of dead wood habitats.

Target Audience
Greenspace owners and managers.

Training sessions on the importance of stag beetles as an indicator species and dead wood as a habitat. How to create stag beetle nesting boxes and wood piles;
Direct marketing: send out invites to parks services, land managers and owners;
Although the target audience was not specifically the general public, a press release was sent out as it was an interesting story - this linked in to what people can do in their gardens and the survey;
Article written for the parks service magazine and Time Out.

Count the number of people attending training course and give out an evaluation sheet to complete;
Count the number of articles that contain the key messages;
Six months later - assess the change in practise by sending out an informal questionnaire to training course delegates.

Case Study 2: Chalk Grassland Biodiversity Action Plan

A. Chalk Grassland Workshop
To educate farmers and landowners on the value of chalk grassland and how sheep grazing can help the habitat rather than leaving it to go to scrub.

30 people to attend workshop;
To get the optimum number of sheep grazing per hectare of chalk grassland in a target area within one year;
To get two articles in local press and one in Farmers Weekly, containing key messages.

Target Audience
Farmers and landowners.

Direct marketing: send a letter to farmers and landowners in the area asking them to attend a workshop;
Give a workshop highlighting the importance of chalk grassland as a habitat and how to manage/farm the area in a way that benefits both farmer/land owner and wildlife;
Follow up press release to local press and to specific land owner/farmer press;
Article for Farmers Weekly.

Count number of people who attend the workshop and give out an evaluation sheet to complete;
One year later, undertake follow up site visits to see if sheep are grazing the target area;
Count number of articles which include the key messages.

B. Open Day at a chalk grassland site
To highlight the importance of chalk grassland as an important habitat and educate people about the species that are found there.

To get 100 local residents to visit a specific site on an Open Day.

Target Audience
General public, specifically local residents living close to chalk grassland areas.

Endorsement from a famous novelist/ecologist saying how we should protect what is on our doorstep;
Press release sent to local and national press, including details of Open Day and the endorsement and a press invitation and photocall to come to Open Day;
Open Day at a chalk grassland site with guided walks from local experts and children's activities.

Count number of people who attend the day with clicker on the gate.

Case Study 3: Water Vole Biodiversity Action Plan

A. Conference on water voles
To raise awareness of water voles and show how planners and conservation bodies can work together to protect the species.

150 Planners to attend a conference;
Articles/invitations in five papers to attract delegates up to two weeks before the event;
Water voles to be considered in planning process where necessary.

Target Audience

Leaflet produced with details of the conference - mailed to planning bodies;
Press release sent to planning press advertising the conference;
Conference held, highlighting the plight of the water vole and what can be done to help;
Article written for planning press.

Monitor number of delegates and give out an evaluation sheet to complete;
Monitor number of telephone calls from people wishing to attend after seeing articles;
Send questionnaire/telephone 10% of conference delegates at yearly intervals for five years to see whether or not they have considered water voles in the planning process.

B. 'Wind in the Willows' family event at a nature reserve.
A fun day out educating people about water voles.

Coverage in four local papers before the event;
50 families to attend the day;
50 children to take part in the competition.

Target Audiences
General public - families.

Press release to local press and events guides advertising the event and how Ratty in 'The Wind in the Willows' was a water vole;
Posters produced and displayed in the local area and flyers distributed;
Family Open Day with children's competition linked in to water voles and a 'Wind in the Willows picnic' - with all the food from the book and characters dressed up as Ratty, Toad, etc.

Count articles in local press before the event;
Count number of people who attend the Day;
Count competition entries.

More SMART Objectives

A. 50 delegates to attend a conference highlighting the importance of churchyards as a refuge for wildlife;
B. To evaluate an increase or decrease in wetland habitats: assess number of acres in 2000 and compare this with acreage in 2010;
C. Monitor a sample of London Parks for the presence of dead wood habitats;
D. 10% of all schools in London to return a slip from a pamphlet sent throughout the capital within 6 months, asking for a school visit to help develop a wildlife garden in their school grounds. Assess one year later how many of the schools that were visited set up wildlife areas. Assess five years later how many of those set up still exist and are used regularly.

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