The BNHS has, since 2014, been running a biennial conference looking at some of the insect groups that tend to get overlooked by the amateur recorder. Three such conferences have now been held with a fourth planned for 2020. The plan was that these would be biennial events with conference years alternating with workshops on neglected invertebrate groups. Each conference has had presentations covering seven groups of organisms.
The conferences and workshops are subsidised by BNHS as furthering the aims of the Society and we are also exceedingly grateful for generous sponsorship by The One Stop Nature Shop for the 2018 event.
Speakers and workshop tutors have all been acknowledged specialists in their respective fields and have come from across the UK. The conferences are further enhanced by display material including exhibits from speakers and delegates.
Although many delegates have been from Bedfordshire significant numbers have also come from neighbouring counties and from further afield including Norwich, Derbyshire and Isle of Wight. Many have attended each of the conferences and it is also very gratifying to have previous speakers returning as delegates in succeeding years. So far the workshops have covered Aphids and Earthworms with the next one scheduled to be on Galls.
In 2010 Alan Outen launched the Neglected Insects in Beds Initiative and then to further facilitate this founded Beds Invertebrate Group (BIG) in 2011. These events have been another step to furthering progress on the initiative. Significant progress has been made in the recording of previously neglected groups in the County, such that several of these can no longer be regarded as neglected and indeed for some taxonomic groups Bedfordshire is now one of the best recorded counties in the country.Presentations made at the conferences are available via the following links:-
2018 More Neglected Insects in Bedfordshire
Held on 17th November 2018 at The Forest Centre, Millenium Country Park, Marston Moretaine, MK43 0PR.
2016 Amazing Insects and Spiders in Bedfordshire
Held on 5th November 2016 at The Forest Centre, Millenium Country Park, Marston Moretaine, MK43 0PR.
2014 Neglected Insects in Bedfordshire
Held on 15th November 2014 at The Forest Centre, Millenium Country Park, Marston Moretaine, MK43 0PR.