Wildlife count a wonderful way to connect with nature | Nichola Gill

For the past few weeks I have helped organise a series of events called The Spring Wood Big Wildlife Count, which is taking place over the course of the summer.

Friday, 16th July 2021, 3:45 pm
Nature recorder joined the Pendle Hill Landscape Partnership team to identify species living within Spring Wood, Whalley.

The first in the series, Wild Flowers and Bees, was held on Saturday, June 5th, at Spring Wood Whalley.

Having only recently joined the Pendle Hill Landscape Partnership team in February, I haven't had the opportunity to work from an office, meet with people face to face, or get as involved with projects as I perhaps could have done pre-Covid.

Given the restrictions, the majority of my work has been carried out at home to date. I've also joined over halfway through a well established project, as I am covering maternity leave until December, so it's obviously been a strange start to my new job.

Now that we are finally able to get projects and activities up and running again, it was great to get outside and meet people in person at Spring Wood.

This being said, I'm pretty sure my colleagues felt the same excitement that I did, as they have spent the last year only engaging with audiences online.

Alongside my colleagues Carol, Sarah and Alison, we joined 10 keen nature recorders, who helped us to identify and record the species living within this beautiful site.

Some people used the iNaturalist app, which we are using as a database to collect our findings, whilst others used pen and paper.

Common spotted orchid, red campion, germander speedwell, common mouse ear, cuckooflower and ragged robin were amongst some of the wild flowers logged.

It was a fantastic event, and we had people of all ages and expertise, some being bee and wild flower experts, and others having no experience at all.

The size of the meadow meant we could all safely socially distance and enjoy spending time with each other in nature.

We have since held two more events, recording minibeasts on June 30th, and then tree species on July 8th.

Spring Wood now has over 661 separate observations on the iNaturalist app, and we are hoping to build on this again, with two more events in the pipeline – looking at bats and fungi (dates to be confirmed).

In the meantime, why not download the iNaturalist app and record your findings at your own leisure, you could even take a trip to Spring Wood and help us build on our Big Wildlife Count.

Pease visit our website http://www.pendlehillproject.com/spring-wood-big-wildlife-count for more details, including a guide on how to use iNaturalist.