College volunteers get stuck in for wildlife
A group of enthusiastic senior boys from Winchester College have been volunteering their time to improve local Wildlife Trust nature reserves and other green spaces for wildlife.
Since the start of the year, the boys have worked alongside the College’s Duncan Stewart Fellow of Natural History, Nick Baker – better known as a TV presenter and naturalist – to improve habitats on nature reserves in the Winchester area. Conservation is part of the College’s Community Service programme which gives pupils the opportunity to broaden their life skills and to bring tangible benefits to the wider community.
The boys were involved in a range of conservation activities, including removing and replacing fencing, hedgerow planting and carrying out tree surveys on different nature reserves and other wildlife-rich spaces around Winchester. Their efforts have improved conditions for a range of local species including skylarks, grey partridge, common lizards and slow worms.
Nick Baker, Duncan Stewart Fellow of Natural History at Winchester College and Vice President of the Wildlife Trusts said: “”In addition to supporting their local community and its fantastic natural riches, the boys have garnered a deeper understanding of the work that the Trusts do, their relevance to wildlife conservation, as well as the well-being and health of local communities. We look forward to getting involved with even more projects in the future.”
Ellie Green, Assistant Itchen Valley Grazing & Reserves Officer said: “It’s been fantastic to see young people giving up their time to help look after their local countryside and wild spaces. Volunteers are at the heart of the Wildlife Trust’s work, contributing over 44,000 hours of their time to our work every year.”