By Susannah O’Riordan, Ipswich ranger at Suffolk Wildlife Trust
Holywells Park in Ipswich is playing host to a Bio Blitz on Sunday 7th June. A Bio Blitz is a recently coined term for what is usually a 24 hour period of intensive wildlife recording. So that’s as many different species of plant, bird, invertebrate, mammal and more besides as you can find in one day.
The message at the heart of a Bio Blitz is that there is absolutely no requirement to be an expert! Everyone is welcome, it’s as much about learning about wildlife as it is recording it. Whether you know Holywells park like the back of your hand because you’ve been rolling down its hills since the age of two, or you’ve never been – it’s a gem close to the centre of Ipswich and we’d love to see you. Come along for the entire day, pop along for an hour or two or book yourself on to one of the special sessions to find out more about the mammals or reptiles that live in the park.
It all kicks off at 6am tomorrow (Sunday 7th June) with a bird walk. Then we’ll be off to discover what small mammals we’ve captured in our Longworth traps before going to search for reptiles. Local experts will lead walks on butterflies, wildflowers, lichens and invertebrates and GeoSuffolk will be holding their own GeoBlitz, looking at the differing geology in the park. From 11am to 4pm we’ll be holding bookable pond dipping sessions, and you can drop in for bug hunts and family wildlife walks all day. The Bio Blitz will end with a dusk walk at 8pm in the hope of seeing stag beetles in flight. Please see our website for the complete programme and timings.
A Bioblitz is a fantastic way to way to increase your natural history knowledge and gain new skills. Whether you’re a real enthusiast or a complete beginner we’ll have a range of experts on hand to help identify your discoveries. Crucially, the data you gather will be used to make a real contribution to science. During the event you will be able to submit your findings directly to the Suffolk Biodiversity Records Centre with help from our staff and volunteers.
The BioBlitz is a free event but some sessions are bookable and places may be limited. Please book in advance for the bird, small mammal and reptile sessions. All other sessions can be booked either in advance or on the day.
For more information or to book please call Susannah O’Riordan on 07827 252135
More wildlife recording with Suffolk Wildlife Trust this summer:
Surveying & recording Suffolk species
Saturday 18 July from 9:30am – 4:00pm at Trimley Marshes
Learn how to survey and record animals and plants so that your records can be used to make decisions about conservation in Suffolk. Join the County recorders, Suffolk Naturalists’ Society and Suffolk Ornithologists’ Group on this fun and informative day. Beginners welcome.
24 hr BioBlitz at Lackford Lakes
Saturday 1 August 4pm until Sunday 2 August 4pm
A full 24 hours of wildlife recording with Suffolk Wildlife Trust staff, volunteers and local experts on hand to help. Everyone is welcome regardless of experience.