For the final blog of my 2½ month placement I thought I would share some of the things I would recommend doing in Lincolnshire, based upon the things I’ve enjoyed – very much with a wildlife focus.
- Watch the murmurations. The tight starling formations and their flight paths are just mesmerising – I saw them at Whisby but there are other places this happens including Far Ings.
- Visit reserves with different habitats, including peatland, grassland, fenland and marshland...
- ...Or if you are feeling really up for a challenge, visit all 100 reserves. This is probably one for the collectors among you.
- If you’ve done that you may as well volunteer with the Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust or join a local group (but if you do the latter seek help from experts otherwise your efforts could be counterproductive if you want to help conserve Lincolnshire's wildlife and habitats);
- Encourage others (particularly children and grandchildren) to get involved with nature. For instance, the Wildlife Trust produce a brilliant set of activity packs for children (Wildlife Watch) and often nature reserves will have groups such as Nature Tots or Junior Wardens.
- Visit the Bowthorpe Oak. A tree that has had to put up with have a door, a dining room and a pigeon loft added to it and is still alive about 1,000 years after it was planted.
- Join Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust (or buy membership for someone else who also might be interested).
- Visit Gravity Fields in Grantham. This isn’t strictly a wildlife-related activity but it is an excellent science fair that takes place in Grantham (obviously visit any exhibit that Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust has).
- Spot a sparrowhawk, nightingale, nightjar and hen harrier. Extra points if you get to see one washing in a pond (as I was lucky enough to do – funnily enough she had it all to herself!). There are plenty of other birds available to view (don’t get me started on owls).
- Go to Gibraltar Point, sit in the sofa by the window and enjoy the stark beauty (with a coffee, tea or hot chocolate of course).
- Get out there and enjoy the nature we have (but be respectful of it and the people trying to protect it for us – that hardly needs to be said).
- Once you’ve done this, put your feet up and have a read about Sir Joseph Banks, a very interesting and inspirational character in the world of botany.
(Please keep number 10 to yourselves though, otherwise I won’t ever get near the sofa again!)