FROM beavers to bug hunts, Dorset Wildlife Trust has a range of interesting activities in February, an invitation to get out in the fresh air, even if it is cold! For more information on DWT in general and on volunteering opportunities and working parties, visit www.dorsetwildlifetrust.org.uk
Saturday 9th – Brownsea members day, 11am-3pm, an exclusive opportunity for members to visit Brownsea Island during the ‘closed season’ to see a spectacular array of wildlife, including rare birds visiting the lagoon, and the iconic red squirrels. The DWT Brownsea Island nature reserve is a true wildlife haven and a wonderful experience for nature enthusiasts and those discovering Dorset’s wildlife. The trip will leave Poole Quay at 11am and return from Brownsea at 3pm. To book, phone 01305 264620 or email info@dorsetwildlifetrust,org.uk.
Friday 15th – The Wildlife and Management of RSPB Arne, from Ladybird Spiders to Sika Deer, 7.30pm, illustrated talk at the Allendale Centre in Wimborne.
Saturday 16th – I Love Wildlife, 11am-noon, join DWT at Chesil to celebrate Valentine’s weekend, to make gifts for the animals in your garden to show how much you love wildlife! All ages welcome. Meet at Chesil Beach Centre. No booking required.
Wednesday 20th – Stormy Sea-shore Scavengers, 11am-12.30pm, walk along Chesil Beach and hunt the strandline for wildlife treasure blown in with the Atlantic storms. This is a great way to find out what lives in the deeper water as you look for rare pink sea fans, shark eggcases and who knows what else you may find. No booking required.
Beavers in Devon, Restoring Wetlands the Natural Way, 7.30pm, Fontmell Magna village hall, talk by Jake Chant. Beavers have been described as nature’s water engineers, so their re-introduction to an area in Devon is something of an experiment in water management.
Thursday 21st – Caterpillar Kids at Lorton, Beasts, bugs and slugs, 1.30-3.30pm; explore the woods of Lorton Meadows, uncovering minibeasts, then create your own beautiful beetle to take home. Family fun, wildlife inspired crafts and games, with the Community Conservation Officer. Booking essential, please phone 01305 816546.
Friday 22nd – Caterpillar Kids at Lorton, Natty nests and brilliant birds, 10.30am-12.30pm. Who builds the best nest? Join DWT to discover just how tricky it is to build a nest with just a beak and feet! Family fun, wildlife inspired crafts and games, with the Community Conservation Officer. Booking essential, please phone 01305 816546.
Saturday 23rd – The Chesil Challenge, 11am-12.30pm, a children’s treasure trail inside and outside the Chesil Beach Centre looking for clues to solve puzzles about Chesil Beach and the Fleet Lagoon. Suitable for 5-plus. No booking required.
Pictured: Red squirrel; photograph by Paul Williams