Nature study days in Kent

Birdwatching for beginners

Birdwatching for beginners - Credit: Archant

Do you have a passion for nature but want to know more? Learn from the experts on a study day covering everything from botany to bird watching.

Do you know your ash from your elder, grass snake from adder, and just how do you tell a marsh harrier from a hen harrier?

Let Kent Wildlife Trust take you on a voyage of discovery with its comprehensive series of Wildlife Study Days for 2016.

The 46 wide-ranging courses run through to December and are designed to help the people of Kent appreciate and find out more about the wonderful wildlife that surrounds them.

Jill Evington, who is People and Wildlife Development Officer for the Trust, said: “From budding botanists to keen bird watchers – there’s a course to suit all nature nuts and conducted in a relaxed, informal, atmosphere in which everyone can progress at their own pace whilst enjoying the company of like-minded people.

“Beginners are very welcome and those with some experience will be able to improve their knowledge and identification techniques.”

New courses for this year include ‘Ground beetle identification and ecology for beginners’, ‘Get more from your birdwatching (beginners and improvers)’, ‘Wildlife-rich meadows, ‘Breeding bird survey methods, songs and calls for beginners’, and ‘All about barn owls in Kent.’

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The study day programme has been developed over 19 years and in that time it has covered a growing number of subjects and attracted more than 6,600 participants.

Courses, which are led by experts in their fields, are usually limited to 15 participants, to allow for sufficient individual attention, and are normally held in the ‘field,’ often on local nature reserves. Mainly held at weekends, the day starts at 10am and ends by 4pm.

Course fees are very affordable – usually £27 per day and just £22 for senior citizens, students, the unemployed and those who volunteer for Kent Wildlife Trust.

There are, however, varying fees for short and weekend courses and, if you wish to book through your employer, a corporate rate of £49 per day will apply.

Find out more

Many courses are very popular with places limited, so early bookings are advised. These can be made by calling 01622 662012. Details of the full programme can be found at www.kentwildlifetrust.org.uk (follow the ‘What’s On’ link) or request a brochure by email at info@kentwildlife.org.uk

Upcoming courses this spring are:

11 March: Birds of the Blean and North Downs

12 March: Lichens for Beginners

18 March: Wake Up Your Garden For Wildlife!

19 March: Amphibian Ecology and Survey Techniques

3 April: Geology and Landscape of the Coast around Dover

9 April: Reptile Ecology and Survey Techniques

16 April: Ground beetle identification and ecology for beginners

7 May: Birds of Woodland in Spring

19 May: Woodland Plants

21 May: Introduction to Orchids

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