Fill your head with wildlife in 2016

26 January 2016 | Posted in Wildlife Events , Michael Blencowe
Fill your head with wildlife in 2016

By Michael Blencowe

Community Wildlife Officer

Have you ever heard a nightingale’s song? Or seen a glow-worm glow? Or watched badgers emerging in the twilight? Or seen purple emperors soaring in the treetops?

In 2016 Sussex Wildlife Trust is giving you the opportunity to get closer to nature and learn more about the wonderful wildlife of Sussex - from birds, bats and butterflies to beetles, bumblebees and bryophytes – with a packed programme of courses.

Our education courses typically consist of an indoor teaching session followed by a chance to get out ‘in the field’ with an expert and experience some amazing wildlife. There are courses to suit everybody from beginners to amateur naturalists.

For people wanting to just get closer to some of our most amazing species we offer the chance to hear nightingales singing on a summer’s evening, the song of the dawn chorus at sunrise, walk on the South Downs at night looking for the lights of the incredible glow-worm or sit in a Sussex woodland watching badgers emerge from their setts at dusk.

Our popular introduction to birdwatching course runs throughout the year and we have courses focusing on owls and gulls too.

If you’d like to learn more about the fascinating insects found in Sussex we have beginners courses introducing you to our butterflies, moths, dragonflies, beetles and bumblebees. There’s also an event looking for our most impressive butterfly; the purple emperor. We’ll be looking at habitat management for invertebrates at a course at the end of the year.

Those interested in wildlife conservation will want to attend our course on wildlife and the planning process.

Gardeners will be interested in our courses teaching you how to improve your garden for wildlife by creating a wild flower meadow and pond for wildlife. There’s an introduction to the wild flowers of Sussex and botanists may want to improve their knowledge of grasses and bryophytes. We’ll be exploring the incredibleworld of fungi in November

There’s also the opportunity to learn more about our elusive nocturnal mammals. There’s a course on small mammals and others which focus specifically on the enigmatic harvest mouse and hazel dormouse and we’ll be running an evening session to learn about (and listen out for) bats.

At the Seven Sisters Country Park we will explore the wildlife of the seashore and will be studying the exciting autumn migration of birds, butterflies and moths in September.

Artists who are inspired by wildlife will enjoy our courses on botanical illustration, willow sculpture, willow basket making and wood carving.

Throughout the year wildlife photographer David Plummer leads a series of courses for beginners interested in nature photography or photographers looking to improve their skills.

So take the opportunity to learn more about Sussex wildlife this year or perhaps give the gift of wildlife to a naturalist friend.

Visit our What's On webpages for a full list of wildlife events and courses in 2016.


  • Alec:

    28 Jan 2016 19:08:21

    I love these courses and events, and urge others to join them. Unfortunately, only a small percentage are in West Sussex, and I don’t get about so much these days. Can anything be done to redress the balance?

  • Sheila Preston:

    29 Jan 2016 09:18:09

    It’s good to see so many courses available.

  • kim mckenzie:

    29 Jan 2016 11:21:16

    I have a photo of a collared dove licking the face of another.
    I wondered if this has been seen before?
    Is it a sign of affection?

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