I came into this job with a huge passion about protecting the environment and animals and with a lot of knowledge regarding how to live life without making a bad impact on the environment. However, there are big and obvious gaps in what I know when it comes to practical conservation – namely knowing the names of local species of animals and birds!
Already after two weeks I’ve had a lot of opportunities to better my knowledge, including the Moth ID course Isaac blogged about, Seawatch, the plentiful wildlife and conservation books available in the CWT library, and a free Open University course I’ve been doing when I have spare time in the office, and helping out at a wading bird survey at the Hodbarrow reserve.
Isaac and I did this survey on Thursday 15th with the marine trainees Georgie, Amy, Hayden and Jade and a very knowledgable RSPB warden, Dave Blackledge. We identified how many species we could see in the freshwater lagoon and then counted how many there were of each species, with the help of binoculars and a telescope. We saw a lot of Snipe, plus Lapwing, a Heron, a Kingfisher, Tufted Ducks, Coots, Cormorants, Greenshanks and Greylag Geese. It was a very good environment for a beginner birder to be in!
About the authors: Sian and Isaac were Apprentice Conservation Officers with the Trust from September 2016 to spring 2018