Roy of the orchids


Flanders Moss NNR

As with many reserves, at the Stirling NNRs we are absolutely in debt to volunteers that help us out. When you get talking to these people who put in so much unpaid effort, there is often much more to their volunteer CV than the work they do on your reserve and Roy Sexton one such volunteer.

I was out on Flanders recently helping him count the lesser butterfly orchid colony. The count was a bit disappointing – only 9 flower spikes when in the past there have been close to 100. The habitat looked pretty good but it looks as if the cattle that graze the site went in a bit early and may have munched off the flowering spikes. This isn’t a disaster but it will need to be monitored next year and a word had with the grazier (and maybe the cows as well!).

But this in only one site monitored by Roy, he is counting orchids across numerous sites across Stirlingshire and Perthshire and this when he isn’t waging war on giant hogweed on the Allan water or monitoring other rare plants or pursuing his current favourite subject of saphrophytic plants. If we are going to save the declining biodiversity all around us we need more people like Roy. Thanks Roy.

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