April’s here and the Sussex countryside should be bursting into life however I still have one eye pointed skywards expecting a few snowflakes to fall. It’s been a cold start to 2018 and this has hit many animals such as frogs and butterflies who emerged from their winter long hibernation only to be hit by blizzards. With the freezing temperatures behind us we can look forward to an explosion of spring wildlife in April.
We have plenty of events lined up which will allow you to enjoy and understand more about our amazing spring wildlife over the coming month.
Our monthly Woods Mill Wander is a great opportunity to watch the seasons change at our Woods Mill headquarters with a talk, cakes and a walk. The walk on 6 April is fully booked (they book up fast!) but we’ve added another on 13 April.
If the coming of spring is inspiring you to become more active too why not try your hand at a new skill. There are still a few places on our Woodland and Willow Basket Making course(7&14 April)
Each year we send out a welcome party to greet the return of the incredible wheatear- one of first summer migrants to return. Join us as we search for these beautiful birds on the downs at Lewes (12 April) and Seaford Head (20 April). If you want to learn more about bird migration there will a talk given by Sarah McKenzie on that topic organised by our Eastbourne group (19 April).
As always our busy programme of adult education is booking up fast. The ‘Introduction to Raptors’ course will teach you all about hawks, falcons, eagles and kites on a day spent at Burpham. The first course is fully booked so we’ve added another (24 April). There are still some place left on our ‘Introduction to Small Mammals’ course (28 April) where you’ll learn all about our elusive shrews, mice, voles and other mammals and help undertake a mammal survey. A new course for 2018 is ‘Field Craft: Get Closer to Wildlife’. Aimed at photographers and wildlife watchers expert photographer David Plummer shares some of his skills with you. The April course is fully booked but we’ve just added another on 16 September.
There are plenty of opportunities to join a walk around the county this month. Mike and Rosalie are promising ‘Bluebells and more’ on a walk around Hammerpot on 14 April (the ‘…and more’ seems to involve the local pub!). Over at our Rye Harbour reserve things starts getting lively as our gulls, terns and waders start to breed. Join a guided walk there on 15 April and 28 April.
If you’ve never been to our beautiful (and odd!) Eridge Rocks reserve now is your chance. Join warden Alice Parfitt as she leads a Members-only walk through this wonderful woodland and explores those weird sandstone monoliths (26 April).
Plenty of opportunities to get out in April and watch spring spring into life!