Tuesday, 14 November 2017

End of an Era

The RSPB have recently revised their rules for Wildlife Explorer groups. Under the new guidelines, the RSPB will no longer support small groups like the Airedale Otters, focusing instead on larger groups and those based at their nature reserves.

As a result, we have unfortunately had to close the group. It is disappointing, but we must accept their decision.

The group leaders - volunteers Cam, Joost, Chris, Les, and Nick - would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your amazing support for the Airedale Otters over the years. We have had many memorable times at our events, from our first event at Bracken Hall on Sunday 19th June 2011, until our last event, a bat walk at St Ives on Saturday 9th September 2017.

We've found Otter poo and Grass Snake eggs. We’ve seen Bank Voles and Field Mice, Red Grouse and Red Kites, Kingfishers and Goosanders. We've seen Common Lizards, Toads, Frogs, and Newts too. We listened to Skylarks singing, Curlews calling, Buzzards mewing, and bat boxes beeping. We’ve dipped in ponds, swept up bugs, and foraged for fungi. We’ve spotted White-clawed Crayfish in the dark, seen Grey Squirrels fighting in a tree, and counted Nuthatches and Treecreepers in the freezing cold. And a lot more besides!

As well as some great memories, the Airedale Otters have also left the legacy of the nest boxes in Deep Cliffe Wood. Above all, it’s been a pleasure to meet so many enthusiastic and knowledgeable kids and parents.

We hope you all find outlets for your enthusiasm for wildlife.

All the best
Cam, Joost, Chris, Les, and Nick

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