As i've mentioned previously my project is focusing on investigating the relationships between invertebrates and different approaches to managing wildlife gardens. I will be specifically focusing on bees, wasps and flies - but using them as a representative of a host of invertebrates.
The hypothesis is that the diversity and abundance of bees, wasps and flies would be greater in a garden intensively planted with nectar rich flowers (The Bufferfly Explorers wildlife garden) than in a garden left to colonise naturally with wild flowers (The Natural History Museum wildlife garden).
The sucess of my project will be judged on the reliabililty of the data I gather, so during my field work I must make sure that I contol as many variables as possible such as the time of day I collect species, the weather I collect species in, the types of areas that I will sample from in both gardens etc - by doing so, I can increase the chances of gathering reliable data.
Today I met with Tate, an interpretation developer at NHM who designed the 'Butterfly Explorer's' wildlife garden and discussed with her how she developed the design of the exhibition, focusing on her ideas when creating the UK wildlife garden. She said that my research may be valuable in informing the design for next year's exhibition, as well as showing the positive impact that the UK wildlife garden is having in increasing biodiversity - which we especially want the public to be aware of, as 2010 has been appointed by the UN as the international year of biodiversity!