24 May Increasing Connection with Nature: introducing School Children to Ecology
In May 2019 BSG Ecology’s Emily Moore and Sophie Olejnik spent an afternoon teaching primary school children in Barnsley about the ecology of amphibians and other freshwater creatures. The event allowed the children the opportunity to see and learn about a range of species, including great crested newt, smooth newt and common toad. It was facilitated by Barratt Homes, being close to one of the development sites we are supporting them on.
Following an explanation of what being an ecologist involves and of the life cycles of the various species they were likely to see, the pupils were shown the amphibians. These were in the process of being moved from a development site to a nearby mitigation area. As part of the mitigation scheme, ponds and hibernacula have been created to provide breeding and overwintering habitat.
The children enjoyed assisting with the release of the captured amphibians, before having a go at building their own miniature hibernacula made from rocks, logs and brash collected from the site. Some also tried their hand at pond dipping, using keys to identify their findings, and competing to see who could find the most interesting creatures.
The day provided a great opportunity to enthuse children about nature, to share knowledge and promote the profession, and was thoroughly enjoyed by our staff.
Ian Ruthven Managing Director of Barratt Developments Yorkshire West commented:
“We were thrilled to welcome BSG Ecology to our Lock Keeper’s Gate development in May and are incredibly grateful to Sophie and Emily for volunteering their time to help teach the local children about how they can encourage wildlife in the local area and in their own gardens!
Barratt Developments is dedicated to preserving and encouraging wildlife in the areas in which we build, so it was wonderful to have BSG on hand to help welcome the amphibian residents to our development! BSG provided excellent support throughout the project, and we look forward to continuing to work with them on this and other schemes across our developments.”
If you need any advice with regard to great crested newts or invertebrates, please get in touch with one of our offices.