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Ecology club

Ecology club
Members of the ecology club recording their butterfly survey.
Thursday 21st July 2011 by C. Freeman

Ecology club has been a great success this term with students conducting wildlife surveys and finding some unexpected residents. Students are used to seeing species such as bee orchids, hares and herons in the grounds, but they recently discovered lizards nestling under rocks, as well as the shed skin of a grass snake.

Mrs Boyce runs ecology club on Tuesday evenings. She said: ‘Finding the lizards has been the highlight of this term because the students had never seen or handled one before. They are common lizards but we have gone back to the same spot each week to find them so we know they are doing well. We found the snakeskin by chance while we were doing some pond dipping. At first we first thought it was a hosepipe because of its pattern. It felt very like tissue paper. In ecology club you never know what you are going to find next!’

The club recently completed a survey for Butterfly Conservation who are collating results from all over the UK. During a 15-minute period students logged a total of six Large and Small White butterflies, a six spot Gurnet moth, six Gatekeepers and one Painted Lady.

Anyone can take part in the survey that runs until 31 July. Butterfly Conservation has a checklist that can be downloaded from their website. Mrs Boyce said: ‘We know we have other species on site, such as the Holly Blue, but because we didn’t spot one in the specified period we cannot log it in our results. I would like to thank all those who have come along to ecology club this term and we hope to go out again next year so check the screens for more details in September. ’

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