Discover your local wildlife this May

With summer on it’s way May is the perfect time to get outside and enjoy wildlife! Connecting with nature can do wonders for your wellbeing and, during busy study times, it is really important that you take time out of your day to look after yourself.

This May, there are loads of ways you can connect with nature at UOG, including Wildlife Week at FCH to kick the month off:

  • Tuesday 3rd May: Discover Small Mammals workshop
  • Tuesday 3rd May: Bat Walk
  • Tuesday 3rd May: Moth Trapping
  • Wednesday 4th May: Bee Love Bombing Workshop
  • 2nd-8th May: It’s Hedgehog Awareness Week. Did you know that FCH and Hardwick campuses have been awarded bronze-level Hedgehog Friendly Campus status by the Hedgehog Preservation Society? Let us know if you spot any!
  • Throughout May: Why not take a moment to simply enjoy the tranquil grounds of UOG? As part of No Mow May, our Estates team will once again be letting some natural hotspots on our campuses run wild. Be sure to share with us any exciting species you see!

Find out more about May wildlife activities below.

Discover Small Mammals – FREE

Tuesday 3rd May, 7-8:30pm (QU027, FCH) and Wednesday 4th May, 7.30am (outside FCH Chapel)

You are invited to investigate small mammal activity on campus as part of Hedgehog Awareness Week.

Small mammals that were once widespread across the UK are experiencing serious, long-term declines. Join us on Tuesday evening for a short talk and to set up tracking and trapping equipment. Return on Wednesday morning to release the captured animals and record your findings!

Longworth traps are safe, live traps used to harmlessly capture small mammal species. You will help us to collect the traps in the morning and release the animals.

We will also put out footprint tunnels, which are small pieces of equipment used to record the footprints of small animals, particularly hedgehogs. Please note that you MUST be able to commit to attending both Tuesday evening AND Wednesday morning to help recover traps.

Open to all students and staff – just turn up!

Bat Walk – FREE

Tuesday 3rd May, 8:30-10pm (outside FCH Chapel)

Help us to discover which bat species are resident at FCH. Using bat detectors, and a bit of knowledge, we will identify the types of bats we have around our campus.

Please bring some warm clothes and a torch! This activity is weather dependent.

Open to all students, staff and members of the public – just turn up! Children under 16 must be accompanied by an adult.

Moth Trapping – FREE

Tuesday 3rd May, 8:45-11pm (outside FCH Chapel)

We have over 900 species of larger moths in the UK, the number caught in moth traps has decreased by 33% over the last 50 years.

Join moth expert Robert Homan at FCH to see what species we have on site. All moths will be released unharmed. Please bring some warm clothes. This activity is weather dependent.

Bee Love Bombing Workshop – FREE

Wednesday 4th May, 4-6pm (QU027 FCH)

Learn about pollinator species and make your own “bee bomb”!

Come along to enjoy an engaging presentation about the importance of pollinators and pollination, followed by a tutorial on how to create your own handmade, wildflower “bee bomb”. 

This workshop, by the Pollinator Awareness and Habitat Regeneration Project, will be given to universities around the country to create awareness of the decline of pollinator species in the UK and highlight their importance to our ecosystem and economy. The Pollinator Awareness and Habitat Regeneration project aims to help the declining pollinator population by encouraging the restoration of lost wildflower habitats.

Open to all students and staff – just turn up!

Rare, white Pyramidal Orchid (Anacamptos pyramidalis var. albiflora)

No Mow May

Each year, our Estates team lets some areas on our campuses run wild as part of ‘no mow’ May.

The secret to No Mow May is to do… well, nothing, actually. Rather than keeping up with our regular lawn maintenance we’ve locked up the lawnmowers to let natural areas on campus grow wild in order to support our local wildflowers and invertebrates. Keep an eye out for some hidden treasures – just be careful not to pick or trample any flowers!

Last year, a wild area on Hardwick campus produced a rare white Pyramidal Orchid (Anacamptos pyramidalis var. albiflora), which Dr Anne Goodenough confirmed as a fairly unusual colour variation!

In addition to our wildflowers on campus you might want to check out the 3,000 square metres that we’re currently sowing at the Plock Court nature reserve, in collaboration with Gloucester City Council.

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