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Nick Baker, Presenter and Naturalist

From issue:   Issue:   British Wildlife 31.6 August 2020

Britain’s hybrid orchids – it’s a family affair

By - Jon Dunn

In writing the Orchid Summer, Jon Dunn has travelled across Britain researching our native orchid species. In doing so, he saw first hand the vast range of hybrid orchid species, and in this article discusses the history of hybrid orchids, their mystery and importance, as well as raising key questions in regard to their conservation.

 

Compared with continental Europe, Britain has an impoverished orchid flora, with a mere 51 native species – a small proportion of the upwards of several hundred boasted across Europe as a whole. That said, orchid taxonomy, turbulent waters at the best of times, is currently in a state of particular flux: recent genetic analysis suggests that there may, in fact, be merely dozens rather than hundreds of species found in Europe.

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"British Wildlife is the pulsating heart of the UK nature conservation movement."

Matthew Oates, National Trust

"The most important and informative publication on wildlife of our times"

Michael McCarthy, The Independent

"Packed with readable, thoughtful, up to date articles; written by ecologists and naturalists for ecologists and naturalists"

Nick Baker, Presenter and Naturalist