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Conservation Volunteers Days launched – Special week celebrating Cumbria’s wildlife

Red Squirrel

The Lake District Wildlife Park near Keswick will be launching the first of its new Conservation Volunteer Days, as part of a special week of events to celebrate Cumbria’s wildlife during school half-term (Monday 22 – Sunday 28 October 2018).

From ospreys to otters, red squirrels to barn owls, the Wildlife Park will throw the spotlight on the county’s native species with a fun-filled calendar of events. As well as plenty of animal and bird identification games, there will be tips on how to become a ‘nature detective’ and craft activities to get the kids involved in making bird feeders and hedgehog homes.

A series of local wildlife charities and bodies will be visiting throughout the week, with hands-on advice about caring for Cumbria’s native creatures. That includes the RSPB, Cumbria Wildlife Trust and West Cumbria Rivers Trust. There will also be lots of information from Cumberland Bat Group, the Hedgehog Preservation Society and the Wildlife Crime Prevention Unit.

Meanwhile, the first Conservation Volunteer Day will take place on Saturday 27 October, giving over 18s the chance to get some hands-on experience of nature conservation.

Although the Lake District Wildlife Park is famed for its exotic animals and birds, it’s also part of the wider Armathwaite Hall Estate, which includes two Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSIs), extensive woodland, hay meadows and the shores of Bassenthwaite Lake. That means species such as tawny owls, hares, voles and dragonflies all live on the estate and the new Conservation Volunteers will have the chance to help protect, conserve and enhance their native habitats.

The volunteers will give a helping hand to plant trees and remove invasive species, with the reward of lunch and some free time to explore the Wildlife Park.

To get visitors in the mood for some local wildlife fact-finding, special displays charting an array of the county’s mammals, birds, insects and plants will be available for visitors to the Wildlife Park to see throughout the week.

Education and Marketing Co-ordinator Lucy Dunn says, “When people think about the Lake District Wildlife Park, they may think of Zebra, Lynx or Meercats, but we wanted to set aside a special week to underline our pride in native wildlife too. There are plenty of activities to get families involved and we’re excited to be launching our Conservation Volunteer Days to offer people a really practical way to help conserve our natural habitat here in Cumbria.”

Want to become a Conservation Volunteer? Contact Lucy Dunn on 017687 76239 or [email protected]

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