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Talks, field trips, events & activities

Welcome to our action-packed programme of talks, outings and activities.

Upcoming events

1st
December
2019

Exclusive Wildlife Holidays with Naturetrek

Exclusive Wildlife Holidays with Naturetrek

Southern Cyprus: Wednesday 11th – Wednesday 18th March 2020, 8 days, £1395

This tour offers a week of birding and botanising on the Mediterranean island of Cyprus, which is generally bathed in sunshine during the spring. During this two-centre holiday, we will spend three nights in the historic town of Paphos, before moving close to the beautiful Akamas Peninsula National Park on the western side of the island for the subsequent four nights. From each base we will head out each day on gentle natural history walks in search of migrant birds, flowers and a variety of other wildlife, breaking with a taverna lunch or a picnic in a scenic spot. Highlights may include Black Francolin, Chukar Partridge, Bonelli’s Eagle, Long-legged Buzzard, migrating birds and the endemic Cyprus Warbler, plus some late orchids such as Fragrant orchids and Tongue orchids. At the end of each day there will be time to relax back at the hotel or stroll along the beautiful beach below.

Abruzzo in Autumn: Friday 11th to Friday 18th September 2020, 8 days, £1495

In mid-September, Abruzzo National Park is bursting with the fruitfulness of autumn, and our aim during this leisurely week-long holiday is to enjoy the area’s mammal and birdlife as it prepares for the coming winter as well as late-flowering plants. Setting out each day from our delightful family-run hotel base, we’ll select a scenic spot at which to break our daily walk with a delicious lunch made from local produce, and the opportunity to scan the mountain slopes around us for Red Deer, Chamois and Alpine Chough. In September the area’s Brown (‘Marsican’) Bears are fattening up on the seasonal glut of berries — in particular on Alpine Buckthorn berries — and we’ll look for these on an optional afternoon/evening excursion to Refugio l’orio followed by a candlelit supper. Traditional cuisine and aromatic local wines make this a thoroughly well-rounded Italian experience far from the tourist crowds!

For more information about any of these holidays or to book, please call the Naturetrek office on 01962 733051 or email info@naturetrek.co.uk

 

1st
January
2020

North East New Year Plant Hunt-off

North East New Year Plant Hunt-off

© BSBI

BSBI and NHSN are joining forces to bring you an exciting experiment (and national first): the North East New Year Plant Hunt-off! A friendly and competitive duo of events with a serious purpose as two teams seek to record the most species in bloom as part of the BSBI’s innovative New Year Plant Hunt.

Expert botanist Chris Metherell will once again lead a hunt to Holy Island, while amateur botanist James Common will lead a suburban hunt in the Heaton area and challenge the BSBI Support Team to ID the trickier plants his team can record. Urban or rural, inland or coastal, expert or amateur, which will triumphant? Join us as you record the plants blooming in the depths of winter and contribute valuable data to a nationally important recording scheme.

Wednesday 1 January, 10.30am – 2.30pm

With Chris Metherell

In 2019, 28 species were found on Lindisfarne including Sea Mayweed and Sea Campion, alongside naturalised species such as Trailing Bellflower and Wallflower. Can we exceed this total in 2020?

Meet on the village green on Holy Island at grid reference NU12594186. We will take a break for lunch, and aim to finish by 2.30pm.

Free to all. No booking required.


Wednesday 1 January, 10.00am – 2.00pm

With James Common and Sacha Elliott

In 2019, naturalised species such as Red Valerian, Oxford Ragwort and Trailing Bellflower reigned supreme in Heaton, although Musk Mallow marked a notable find. What will urban recorders observe this year?

Meet at the entrance to Iris Brickfield Park in Heaton, grid reference NZ 27829 66078, the starting point that will take in the urban streets of Heaton as well as Heaton Park and Jesmond Dene.

Free to all. No booking required.

10th
January
2020

1829 Talk: Reindeer - the many changes seen by this ancient creature of the north

1829 Talk: Reindeer - the many changes seen by this ancient creature of the north

Friday 10 January, 18.29-18.45, Newcastle University – Ridley Building 2, room RIDB2.1.65

with Ilona Kater, Durham University

Reindeer have a history stretching back over 600,000 years, and throughout this time have experienced many changes in the landscapes where they live across the planet. In northern Europe reindeer were partially domesticated by the indigenous Saami who continue to herd them today. In this talk we will look at some of the changes and challenges experienced by the reindeer and their herders, touching on growing the impacts of a growing industrial presence in the north, politics of indigenous land rights and the rapidly changing climate being experienced in the Arctic in recent years. This forms the basis of a project which aims to bring together a scientific and indigenous understanding of the many factors affecting reindeer in Europe, building a bigger and more holistic picture of their rapidly changing world.

 

10th
January
2020

The Five Deeps Expedition: the world's first manned expedition to the deepest point in each of the five oceans

The Five Deeps Expedition: the world's first manned expedition to the deepest point in each of the five oceans

DSSV-Pressure-Drop-DSV-Limiting-Factor-Mariana-Trench-©-Tamara-Stubbs

Friday 10 January, 7.00 pm-8.00 pm, Newcastle University – Ridley Building 2, room RIDB2.1.65

with Dr.  Alan Jamieson, Newcastle University

The Five Deeps Expedition was the first to reach the deepest point in each of the Earth’s five oceans: the Puerto Rico Trench in the Atlantic, South Sandwich Trench in the Southern Ocean, Java Trench in the Indian Ocean, Challenger Deep in the Pacific and Molloy Deep in the Arctic. The expedition covered 87,000 km in 10 months and marked the first time any human had visited the bottom of the Java, Puerto Rico* or South Sandwich trenches.

Join us to hear more about one of the most exciting expeditions in recent times and hear how the expedition provided Alan Jamieson with the unprecedented opportunity to sample life across a gradient of depths, temperatures, salinity, food supply, latitude and in places around the world that were formed, split, or united millions of years ago by the shifting of the Earth’s tectonic plates.

17th
January
2020

1829 Talk: Pollinators in the city – are foreign flowers the future?

1829 Talk: Pollinators in the city – are foreign flowers the future?

Friday 17 January, 18.29-18.45, Newcastle University – Ridley Building 2, room RIDB2.1.65

with Shannon Goldberg, Northumbria University

Pollinators play an invaluable role in our ecosystem by providing services for reproduction in both wildflowers and crops. The growth of urbanisation in recent years has led to a loss of pollinator biodiversity and this, in part, is down to a lack of foraging resources. City areas such as parkland have the potential to provide good foraging opportunities to pollinators if the right flowers are available. This talk will explore the flower preferences of different pollinators for not only native wildflowers, but also non-native cultivated flowers, and how both can provide ample resources to maintain pollinator biodiversity in this ever-growing urban world.

17th
January
2020

Bumblebees of North East England

Bumblebees of North East England

B. monticola © L Hislop

Friday 17 January, 7.00pm-8.00pm, Newcastle University – Ridley Building 2, room RIDB2.1.65

With the NHSN Bumblebee Team

The team who produced the Bumblebees of North East England will talk about the biology, ecology and future status of bumblebees in the region. The life cycles, current threats and conservation efforts for these iconic insects will be discussed, illustrated by reference to some of the region’s notable species such as the Broken-belted Bumblebee Bombus soroeensis and the Bilberry Bumblebee Bombus monticola.

The speakers will include Shaun Hackett, Louise Hislop, Gordon Port, Stuart Priestley, Charlotte Rankin and Rinke Vinkenoog.

 

19th
January
2020

Red Kite Roost

Red Kite Roost

Sunday 19 January, 2.30 – 5.00pm (end time is an estimate)

With Friends of Red Kites

Join Friends of Red Kites in the Derwent Valley to enjoy one of the most spectacular sights in North East nature. Learn more about kite ecology as you watch the birds arriving to roost at a favoured site before dusk.

Meet at the car park for the Land of Oak & Iron visitor centre at Winlaton Mill, in the Derwent Valley.

NHSN members – FREE. You will be asked to provide your NHSN membership number during registration.
Non-members – £5.00. If you would like to join NHSN, please go to http://www.nhsn.ncl.ac.uk/join-us/become-a-member/

Booking essential. To book, please go to Eventbrite here.

21st
January
2020

Naturally Native Project: A strategic approach to regional conservation of water voles

Naturally Native Project: A strategic approach to regional conservation of water voles

Water Vole © Tom Marshall

Tuesday 21 January, 5.30 – 6.30pm

With Kirsty Pollard, Naturally Native Development Manager

Britain’s fastest declining mammal, the water vole, has suffered as a result of habitat loss and predation from invasive American mink. Find out how Naturally Native will work on a landscape-scale to halt the decline in the North East and facilitate growth and expansion of our native water voles.

NHSN members – FREE. You will be asked to provide your NHSN membership number during registration.
Non-members – £5.00. If you would like to join NHSN, please go to http://www.nhsn.ncl.ac.uk/join-us/become-a-member/

Booking essential. To book, please go to Eventbrite here.

23rd
January
2020

Walk with a Warden

Walk with a Warden

Drone footage of GPNR © NHSN

Thursday 23 January, 10.00am – 12.00pm
Saturday 15 February, 10.00am – 12.00pm

With Des Matheson

Enjoy a walk around Gosforth Nature Reserve as you learn more about the history, management and wildlife of Newcastle’s oldest nature reserve. Ideal for beginners or new members. Attendees are welcome to depart the event following the ‘short loop’ or to remain for a lengthier tour of the tracks and trails on site. Waterproofs and appropriate footwear are recommended.

Gosforth Nature Reserve is home to a range of rare and elusive species and on a typical visit, there is the potential to encounter bittern, roe deer, kingfisher, red fox, red squirrel and more.

NHSN members ONLY. You will be asked to provide your NHSN membership number during registration. If you would like to join NHSN, please go to http://www.nhsn.ncl.ac.uk/join-us/become-a-member/

Booking essential. To book, please go to Eventbrite here.

24th
January
2020

1829 Talk: American Economic Concerns and the Paris Climate Agreement

1829 Talk: American Economic Concerns and the Paris Climate Agreement

Friday 24 January, 18.29pm-18.45pm

with Aislinn Baltas, Newcastle University

Despite analyses that show there are small net macroeconomic effects of climate policy in a highly diverse, large economy like the U.S., many people who oppose such policies protest that specific industries or regions will be negatively affected. To what extent does the American public agree with the COP21 Paris Climate Agreement? Why would they agree with President Trump’s decision to withdraw from the accords? At the epicentre of arguments against the agreement seem to be three main points: that this legislation will cause job loss, the United States will end up bearing too large of a financial burden than they should, and that China will benefit while the U.S. suffers economically because of the accords. Ergo, I hypothesize that most of America’s opposition to the Paris Climate Agreement is based on national economic concerns. I will give information pertaining to the Paris Climate Agreement and why people oppose the accords and test my hypothesis using an original survey, discussing the results and their implications.

25th
January
2020

A Guide to Winter Tree Identification

A Guide to Winter Tree Identification

Saturday 25 January, 10.00 – 11.30am

With Paul Drummond

There is much more to trees than just their leaves. Ideal for beginners, this session at Gosforth Nature Reserve aims to teach attendees how to identify trees during the winter months, based on bark and other features.

NHSN members ONLY. You will be asked to provide your NHSN membership number during registration. If you would like to join NHSN, please go to http://www.nhsn.ncl.ac.uk/join-us/become-a-member/

Booking essential. To book, please go to Eventbrite here.

25th
January
2020

Druridge Pools Guided Walk

Druridge Pools Guided Walk

Hop, Skip and a Jump: Grey Heron © Terry Cavner

Saturday 25 January, 10.00am – 1.00pm

With Iain Robson

Local naturalist, Iain Robson, will lead a guided tour around his local patch touching on the history, ecology and biodiversity of one of our regions premier wildlife-watching sites.

Druridge Pools, a Northumberland Wildlife Trust site, is excellent to view a range of wildfowl, wader and passerine species in Winter. For more information about the site, visit their website here: https://www.nwt.org.uk/nature-reserves/druridge-pools 

NHSN members – FREE. You will be asked to provide your NHSN membership number during registration.
Non-members – £5.00. If you would like to join NHSN, please go to http://www.nhsn.ncl.ac.uk/join-us/become-a-member/

Booking essential. To book, please go to Eventbrite here.

28th
January
2020

A Beginner's Guide to Botanical Drawing

A Beginner's Guide to Botanical Drawing

Cardamine Ladies Smockcrop by Sarah Dickson © NHSN

Tuesday 28 January, 5.30 – 6.30pm

With Dr Alison Cutts

Have you ever wondered what botanical illustration is all about? If so, come and join us for a brief introduction, a look at some botanical artwork and then a relaxing half-hour observing and sketching plant material at the Hancock. Absolutely no experience of plants or drawing is required, just be willing to have a go and maybe get a bit of charcoal under your nails! All materials provided.

This event will also introduce a new and exciting botanical art course set to take place in early Spring.

NHSN members – FREE. You will be asked to provide your NHSN membership number during registration.
Non-members – £5.00. If you would like to join NHSN, please go to http://www.nhsn.ncl.ac.uk/join-us/become-a-member/

Booking essential. To book, please go to Eventbrite here.

31st
January
2020

1829 Talk: Climate Change & UK Wildlife - Are Trophic Levels Losing Sync?

1829 Talk: Climate Change & UK Wildlife - Are Trophic Levels Losing Sync?

Friday 31 January, 18.29-18.45, Newcastle University – Ridley Building 2, room RIDB2.1.65

with Emily Hickenbotham, Newcastle University

Climate change is known to be affecting insect populations in Britain, with UK butterflies’ northern distribution extending northwards and evidence of changed phenology already found in UK beetles. While studies such as these have found an effect on one trophic level, there have been relatively few studies looking into impacts of climate change on interactions between trophic levels in the UK. This talk will demonstrate how long-term datasets can give an insight into how synchronicity is changing between trophic levels. Evidence of changes in trophic level synchrony between moths and plants will be presented, based on analysis of a 22-year dataset collected by the UK Environmental Change Network. While ecological systems do have some phenotypic plasticity, which enables them to synchronise with other natural events despite the interannual variation, the addition of environmental change is causing supplementary cues to move outside the range within which this plasticity has evolved.

31st
January
2020

Gough: saving one of the world's most important seabird islands

Gough: saving one of the world's most important seabird islands

© Stephen Chown

Friday 31 January, 7.00pm-8.00pm, Newcastle University – Ridley Building 2, room RIDB2.1.65

with David Kinchin-Smith and Emma Witcutt

Gough Island sits in the middle of the South Atlantic more than 2,500 km from South Africa, the nearest continental landmass. In the 19th century, House Mice were accidentally introduced to the island by sailors. 200 years later, the mice have evolved to eat the eggs and chicks of the 8-10 million seabirds which breed on the island each year. David and Em spent 13 months living and working on the island for the RSPB and Tristan Da Cunha Conservation Department as part of the Gough Island Restoration Programme. The Restoration Programme is designed to eliminate mice from the island and restore it to the pristine environment and haven for seabirds it once was. David and Em will talk about the Restoration Programme, life in the South Atlantic and their work with the spectacular wildlife which breed on Gough Island.

David is currently Assistant Warden for Coquet Island, and Em has recently joined the Northumberland Coast-Care project team.

4th
February
2020

The Wastes and Strays Project: Championing Newcastle’s Urban Commons

The Wastes and Strays Project: Championing Newcastle’s Urban Commons

Tuesday 4 February, 5.30 – 6.30pm

With Dr Olivia Dee, Newcastle University

Urban commons are some of the largest and most iconic green spaces in towns and cities across the UK. Researchers from Newcastle University are leading a three-year interdisciplinary project to investigate how Newcastle’s precious Town Moor, and other green space sites, can be protected. By exploring the complex legal and cultural identity of the UK’s many urban commons, they aim to develop new strategies to shape their future use in towns and cities, bearing in mind the needs of both wildlife and people. To this end, they are interested in hearing the views of the Natural History Society of Northumbria members.

Join us for a Tuesday Teatime talk and an opportunity to share your views as part of the Wastes and Strays Project.

NHSN members – FREE. You will be asked to provide your NHSN membership number during registration.
Non-members – £5.00. If you would like to join NHSN, please go to http://www.nhsn.ncl.ac.uk/join-us/become-a-member/

Booking essential. To book, please go to Eventbrite here.

7th
February
2020

1829 Talk: What are the Origins of Empathy?

1829 Talk: What are the Origins of Empathy?

Friday 7 February, 18.29-18.45, Newcastle University – Ridley Building 2, room RIDB2.1.65

with Jake Brooker and Diane Austry, Durham University

Empathy, the ability to put ourselves in someone else’s shoes, is a core feature of what it means to be human. It is central to the human experience, from our social and romantic lives to engaging with politics and marketing in our wider society. However, we know little about the extent to which we share such abilities with our closest living relatives, the great apes. Our research has taken us to the miombo woodland in Zambia and Congolese forest to investigate how chimpanzees and bonobos experience and respond to the emotions of others. To do so, we observed conflict prevention and resolution, as well as underlying physiological mechanisms measured using thermal-imaging technology. Our projects aim to extend our knowledge of what it means to be a social and emotional creature in a complex society.

7th
February
2020

Explore the Wonderful World of Marine Mammals Off the Northumberland Coast

Explore the Wonderful World of Marine Mammals Off the Northumberland Coast

© Ben Burville

Friday 7 February, 7.00pm-8.00pm, Newcastle University – Ridley Building 2, room RIDB2.1.65

with Ben Burville

Delve into the mysterious underwater world of marine mammals off the Northumberland coast. This talk by Ben Burville will focus on the behaviour of grey seals and cetacean species.

Ben is a Visiting Researcher at Newcastle University’s School of Marine Science. A keen diver with over thirty years of experience, he has spent more time in the water with grey seals than anyone in the world. His work date has seen him feature multiple times on television, including as part of the most recent series of Autumnwatch.

14th
February
2020

Wildlife in northern England - taking the long view

Wildlife in northern England - taking the long view

Friday 14 February, 7.00pm-8.00pm. Newcastle University – Ridley Building 2, room RIDB2.1.65

With Prof. Terry O’Connor, York University

Our records of wildlife are rich and diverse for the last few decades, and notes from dedicated observers such as Gilbert White can take us back at least three centuries. What about the last few millennia? Can the archaeology of old bones help to put today’s wildlife into a longer-term context? The ancient record is patchy and must be used with care, but it can give us glimpses of vertebrate and invertebrate faunas reacting to rapid climate change, to human modification of the landscape, and to the new opportunities that those modifications presented. We see species disappearing from the record and new species joining it. Those glimpses can give a helpful perspective to contemporary debates over ‘native’ wildlife, introduced species, and conservation baselines.

15th
February
2020

Walk with a Warden

Walk with a Warden

Drone footage of GPNR © NHSN

Thursday 23 January, 10.00am – 12.00pm
Saturday 15 February, 10.00am – 12.00pm

With Des Matheson

Enjoy a walk around Gosforth Nature Reserve as you learn more about the history, management and wildlife of Newcastle’s oldest nature reserve. Ideal for beginners or new members. Attendees are welcome to depart the event following the ‘short loop’ or to remain for a lengthier tour of the tracks and trails on site. Waterproofs and appropriate footwear are recommended.

Gosforth Nature Reserve is home to a range of rare and elusive species and on a typical visit, there is the potential to encounter bittern, roe deer, kingfisher, red fox, red squirrel and more.

NHSN members ONLY. You will be asked to provide your NHSN membership number during registration. If you would like to join NHSN, please go to http://www.nhsn.ncl.ac.uk/join-us/become-a-member/

Booking essential. To book, please go to Eventbrite here.

15th
February
2020

Winter Tree Identification at Tyne Riverside Country Park

Winter Tree Identification at Tyne Riverside Country Park

Saturday 15 February, 10.00am – 12.00pm

With Bill Burlton

Join botanist Bill Burlton to get to grips with our region’s trees in winter. Learn to identify a range of species without the aid of foliage based on bark, buds and other distinguishing features during a short walk along the banks of the Tyne.

NHSN members – FREE. You will be asked to provide your NHSN membership number during registration.
Non-members – £5.00. If you would like to join NHSN, please go to http://www.nhsn.ncl.ac.uk/join-us/become-a-member/

Booking essential. To book, please go to Eventbrite here.

21st
February
2020

1829 Talk: Roads through rainforests: using camera traps to uncover mammal responses to infrastructure

1829 Talk: Roads through rainforests: using camera traps to uncover mammal responses to infrastructure

Friday 21 February, 18.29-18.45, Newcastle University – Ridley Building 2, room RIDB2.1.65

with Laura Braunholtz, Newcastle University

Infrastructure such as roads contribute to over 14% of global forest fragmentation and roadless areas are getting smaller and disappearing faster than ever. In tropical regions, road networks are expanding particularly rapidly, often creating conflicts between development and biodiversity conservation. To provide guidance on ‘biodiversity-friendly’ development, we must first understand how and why species and systems are impacted. This project uses camera trapping to assess medium-large mammal communities in tropical forest sites. In this talk, I will be introducing my research in Brunei, Borneo, a country that retains much of its forest cover alongside well-maintained paved roads.

21st
February
2020

Britain’s Rarest Plants

Britain’s Rarest Plants

Coral Root Orchid © Paul Drummond

Friday 21 February, 7.00pm-8.00pm, Newcastle University – Ridley Building 2, room RIDB2.1.65

with Fred Rumsey, Natural History Museum

Fred will travel around the British Isles making a very personal selection of the plants he believes to be the rarest, and looking at the reasons behind their rarity. The notion that special plants frequently grow in special places, often leading to hotspots of biodiversity, will be explored and some of those special areas looked at in more detail.

Fred Rumsey is Senior Curator in Charge: British & Irish fern and historic herbaria, Natural History Museum, London.

 

28th
February
2020

1829 Talk: The life of a Plastic Microfibre

1829 Talk: The life of a Plastic Microfibre

Friday 28 February, 18.29-18.45, Newcastle University – Ridley Building 2, room RIDB2.1.65

with Max Kelly, Newcastle University

Plastic is now ubiquitous in the marine environment with around 8 million tonnes of plastic waste entering the Ocean each year. The consequences of larger plastic debris are well described with devastating ecological impacts. However, the fate of smaller microplastics remains largely unknown. A major source of these plastics is laundry via the release of plastic microfibres when we wash our clothes. Our latest research shows that a delicate cycle actually increases the release of plastic microfibres compared to normal cycles. This presentation describes the life of a plastic microfibre, from today’s unprecedentedly high production of textiles, to what happens when we wash our clothes, how these plastics enter the environment, and their ecological influence.

28th
February
2020

CSI: Birding – the contribution of forensic genetic techniques to ringing and migration studies

CSI: Birding – the contribution of forensic genetic techniques to ringing and migration studies

Arctic Tern, Farne Islands © Mike Reid

Friday 28 February, 7.00pm-8.00pm, Newcastle University – Ridley Building 2, room RIDB2.1.65

with Prof. Martin Collinson

Martin has been at the forefront of work using DNA-based identification of birds to expand knowledge of identification, migration patterns and breeding ranges. In this talk, he will outline the background to DNA-based identification and show how it can and is being used. Importantly, he argues that DNA based identification augments but does not replace ‘proper’ birding skills…

6th
March
2020

Geology and Geomorphology of the Lambourn Valley, Berkshire

Friday 6 March, 7.00pm-8.00pm, Newcastle University – Ridley Building 2, room RIDB2.1.65

with Lesley Dunlop, Department of Geography and Environmental Science, Northumbria University

The Lambourn Valley is perhaps most widely known as the Valley of the Racehorse with many stables based there making the most of the chalk downland for the training gallops. The valley runs for about 20km from the chalk escarpment of the Ridgeway into Newbury over bedrock of Cretaceous Chalk, and Palaeogene sands and clays. For about one-third of its length it is a dry valley and there are a network of dry valleys leading to it.  Geologically there are 3 SSSIs associated with chalk pits and demonstrating key features of Chalk stratigraphy. The Palaeogene sands have, in places, been hardened into silcretes (sarsens) and the Quaternary river terraces have been worked for gravel.

This talk will cover the general setting of the Lambourn and concentrate on some key research areas such as the fields of sarsens in the upper reaches of the valley and recent digital mapping and geophysical work to locate these. There are some peat deposits in an area of water meadows about halfway along its length and a range of techniques from geophysics, palynology and geochemical has been used to give an explanation for the evolution of this area.

13th
March
2020

British helleborines: an object lesson in plant taxonomy

British helleborines: an object lesson in plant taxonomy

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Friday 13 March, 7.00pm-8.00pm, Newcastle University – Ridley Building 2, room RIDB2.1.65

With Prof. John Richards, Newcastle University

In the British Isles we have eight species of Epipactis, four of which are outbreeding, pollinated by wasps, and the other four primarily self-fertilize. Our concept of species boundaries differs fundamentally between the two groups. Many of the recent developments in our understanding in the genus result from studies of populations in Northumberland. In several cases there is a sharp incongruity between the findings from DNA and those from morphological analysis which raises interesting philosophical questions.

Professor Richards is Emeritus Professor of Botany at the University of Newcastle. He is Joint County Recorder for Plants for South Northumberland for the BSBI, and is a past President of the Alpine Garden Society.

21st
March
2020

An Introduction to Small Mammal Monitoring

An Introduction to Small Mammal Monitoring

Bank Vole by Edward Appleby © NHSN

Saturday 21 March, 10.00 – 11.30am

With Chris Wren

Join NHSN Conservation Lead, Chris Wren, as you get to grips with the monitoring and identification of small mammals. This event will provide a demonstration on the use of Longsworth live-capture traps and will provide an opportunity to view a range of seldom-seen mammals in the field.

Small mammal species found at Gosforth Nature Reserve include Wood Mouse, Common Shrew, Bank Vole, Water Vole and Water Shrew.

Places are limited to reduce disturbance to the animals.

NHSN members ONLY. You will be asked to provide your NHSN membership number during registration. If you would like to join NHSN, please go to http://www.nhsn.ncl.ac.uk/join-us/become-a-member/

Booking essential. To book, please go to Eventbrite here.

About Talks, Field Trips, Events & Activities

2019 Winter Talks

A downloadable, easy to read programme of our pre-Christmas winter talks can be found here, or download a poster of titles and dates here. Please share this with friends, family any anyone else you feel may be interested in delving deeper into the realm of environmental science this season.

Outdoor Events

Throughout the year, experts lead field meetings to explore the natural world and magical landscapes of Northern England.

Outdoor events are free to members, while non-members are asked to provide a small donation. Some outdoor events – those requiring monetary support – will be charged, with NHSN members receiving a significant discount.

For many events, you can just turn up at the meeting place, but some events must be booked in advance and this is stated in the event information. You must make your own way to the meeting point. Please arrive early so that the event can start on time.

In order to visit the best places our trips take place in natural landscapes that can be unpredictable. It is essential that you wear, or take with you, appropriate clothing and accessories to cope with heat, cold, wet, wind, biting insects and to walk on uneven, slippery or wet surfaces. Before you join any of our outdoor events it is essential that you read our Guidance.

It is always advisable (and likely cheaper) for non-members wishing to attend multiple NHSN events to join us.

Friday Night Talks

From October to March, the Society invites experts in the natural world to give inspiring lectures to our members and the wider public. We also have a series of shorter talks, ‘1829’, presented by early-career scientists and current researchers in a variety of topics before the main talk each week.

Due to popular demand for our talks, Newcastle University has kindly made available a larger venue at their Ridley Building. A map to the new venue and parking details are below.

Entry is from 6.00pm for our new 15-minute 1829 talks (starting at 18:29). Tea, coffee and biscuits are available and the opportunity to socialise. Speakers of our main talks (7.00 – 8.00pm) give an illustrated presentation for 45 mins-1 hour and then open the floor for questions.

On site parking is limited to blue badge holders only. There is a public car park directly opposite the Ridley Building on Claremont Road.

Non-members are very welcome to attend, and we ask that they kindly make a donation on the night to support these lectures.

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Some striking #botanicalart for you to enjoy this chilly Monday morning. Check out @HarvardHerbaria to enjoy further works by Tessie K. Frank. 🖌️

Looking at pix being shared this evening for #wildflowerhour, we're starting to see many of the same wildflowers that appear each year on the #NewYearPlantHunt list of most frequently seen species. Have you put dates in your diary yet for the next Hunt? https://t.co/mP3qDOT52h

We’re delighted to bring you two new member-exclusive holidays with @naturetrektours. https://t.co/i1nHX7uW31

Finally, Abruzzo in Autumn. Observe the area’s mammal and birdlife as it prepares for the coming winter, including Red Deer, Chamois and Alpine Chough. © Naturetrek

Life-size British Hawkmoths individually cut from archival prints of my illustrations - and mounted in an old entomology frame (which used to have some real moths in, but they were very tatty and faded)

Another 2019 #GosforthNatureReserve comprised our first site record of Dingy Skipper. Photographed by Philip Jordan and Jane Gray.

Between April and September, a total of 905 butterflies were recorded at the reserve. The highest butterfly transect total for five years! 🦋

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