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Andover Youth Shoots – ‘In Touch with Nature’ project update

February 2021:

In our February session, we were creating pinch points along our pathways. These are areas where the path narrows and more sections of wildlife are growing around it, creating more surface area for animals to travel and plants to thrive. I personally always enjoy planting trees and this was no different, as we always have fun whilst protecting and enhancing the environment around us. I have added below lots of pictures of us planting.


From March 2021:

In the March session, we engaged our senses, helped make a log pile habitat and took part in tree identification.

The session began with a 10 minutes exercise called ‘engaging your senses’. This meant we sat quietly in the woods, looking at and listening to all the wildlife in the environment around us. It was very peaceful and I particularly enjoyed hearing the skylarks. Once this had finished we placed sticks and twigs around a log to create an animal habitat that creatures could shelter under for warmth. After this, we used an information sheet (And Harvey’s knowledge!) to go around the woods and identify different types of trees. It was very interesting to actually learn which trees were which and go into more detail about the characteristics of different types of trees. The tree I found easiest to identify was the silver birch as it has very distinctive silver bark, hence the name! Overall it was a very enjoyable session and I think we all learned a lot. – from Grace

From May 2021:

“Hi! This month we “engaged our senses” for a while in the morning. This means that we were listening to the birds and the wind (mainly). Also, it rained a little bit and therefore it was cold. In addition, we looked at the colours of the clouds as well as everything else. After, we practiced our tree ID skills and tried to identify 6 different trees, this time without the ID guides; including:

– oak

– hazel

– hawthorn

– field maple

– silver birch

– beech

All these trees are native to England. In my opinion, I think that we need a bit of practice but it’s a good exercise to do. The easiest was the silver birch because it had stripy white bark. On the other hand, the most difficult was the field maple as the leaves are small in spring.

Alex brought a wildlife camera and we placed it close to a burrow to discover what animal lives there. It’s very interesting!

In conclusion, the day was very fascinating even though it rained.

From Maylis

As well as this, we have been doing some quadrat surveys in an area of Harmony Woods called the ‘Habitats Trail’ that is due to be developed. We surveyed the area so that we could get a baseline database of what is currently growing there, before we create a new chalk scrape, pond, ditches and banks, and sow some wildflower seed. Therefore, we will be able to track any changes in species richness and abundance that result from our intervention. After this, we planted some wildflowers in the circular meadow in Harmony Woods.

We also spent one session checking the reptile tins and doing some bird point counts.

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