Jersey Bat Group Open Meeting and Volunteer Drive

When:              1 April 2020

Where:            Société Jersiaise

Time:               19:30 – 21:00

The Jersey Bat Group are holding an open evening 1st April to welcome anyone who would like to know more about the work they do. The group invites anyone with an interest in conservation, wildlife volunteering, public engagement or arts and crafts to come along to find out about the volunteering opportunities and training they have to offer.

PLEASE NOTE there may be disruption to planned events through concerns over Covid-19 so watch out for any changes to plans.

Over the last few years, the Jersey Bat Group has been busy. They have discovered new records of bat species in the Island, learnt more about the roost sites of different bat species, increased public awareness by providing talks and walks for schools, building professionals and other organisations. Members have learnt new skills including identifying different species of bats from sounds and appearance, rope access skills to check for roosts in trees, advanced survey skills to carefully trap bats for analysis in the hand and release. Members have also assisted with the ringing of bats as part of licenced projects studying the movement and migration of bats and help track radio-tagged bats to find out where they live and forage.

As the hibernation season draws to a close, the group are gearing up for another busy season of public engagement and research. There are lots of activities that you can get involved in even if you haven’t got any previous experience. For the seasoned bat enthusiasts there are plenty of opportunities for you to develop and grow your skills with the advanced surveys.

The April meeting will give an overview of some of the activities volunteers can get involved in and you will be able to sign up on the spot!  Activities include:

  • Public engagement – including stalls, public walks and talks. This year’s focus is on light pollution and the effect this has on humans as well as nocturnal wildlife
  • Fund raising – e.g. pub quizzes, stalls, cake sales, bat themed merchandise and any other great ideas volunteers may have
  • Transect surveys – walking a set route after sunset with a bat detector to record bat activity 
  • Passive acoustic surveys – assisting with the collection of data from bat detectors left at sites to record activity at a specific site (great for those who prefer to volunteer during daylight hours!)
  • Sound analysis – learn to analyse the recordings from the surveys above to identify the species of bat present and see if the bats are feeding or socialising as well as echolocating to find their way around
  • Members’ activity walks – informal walks, usually monthly, where members can learn to use bat detectors and chat to others about all things batty
  • Roost monitoring
    • counting bats as they emerge from known roosts. This helps us to see how bats are doing year on year and if populations are increasing or declining
    • Checking bat boxes
  • Advanced bat surveys – trapping bats so we can find out more about the breeding status of different bat species within the Island and learn more about the cryptic species of bat in Jersey (these sound similar on the acoustic survey, so the way we find out more is by looking closely at the bats to identify the specific species)
  • Arts ‘n’ crafts – we are keen to recruit artistic or creative volunteers to make batty themed products for the stall and liven up our website and social media.

Amy Hall, Chair of the Jersey Bat Group, said “Bats are fascinating and often misunderstood mammals.  We are hoping that this open meeting and volunteer drive will help both dispel the negative myths about bats and also to enthuse members of the public to help us with bat conservation and research. 

You don’t need to be a member of the group to attend but there will be some membership forms available on the night for anyone wanting to become more involved, or just to support the work we do.”

 

Reptilewatch event – Covid-19 update

With the current situation regarding coronavirus and advice on public gatherings we are regrettably cancelling this event (see here).

In the meantime we are happy to meet with volunteer recorders individually on a one to one basis, however please do not arrange a meeting if you are feeling unwell or have returned from an affected area or have any concerns that you may be at risk of Covid-19 exposure.

Please contact Liz Walsh, on 01534 441628 or email L.Walsh@gov.je to make an appointment for carrying out a Reptilewatch JE survey.

Please refer to the Coronavirus information and advice leaflets:

https://www.gov.je/health/coronavirus/Pages/index.aspx

https://www.gov.je/SiteCollectionDocuments/Health and wellbeing/ID Coronavirus-advice-A4-Poster VB.pdf

Thank you for your interest in this training event.

Wild About Jersey

Natural Environment

T: 01534 441600

Government of Jersey

Growth, Housing and Environment | Natural Environment

Howard Davis Farm | La Route de la Trinite | Trinity | JE3 5JP

Reptilewatch training 2020

People with a passion for nature can learn how to survey and protect our native reptiles and become Wild Volunteers at a free training event on Saturday 14 March.

Reptilewatch JE 2020 (which runs from 9:45am to 4:30pm at La Moye School) will teach people about the four native reptile species that can be found in Jersey, how to survey and assess habitats as well as providing some guidance on the identification other wildlife that they may encounter along the way.

The event is organised by The Jersey Amphibian and Reptile Group, Jersey Biodiversity Centre, Amphibian and Reptile Conservation Trust and the Government of Jersey’s Natural Environment Team.

The event will offer two different levels of training for up to 50 volunteers. All volunteers can train for both Level 1 and Level 2, and do not need to have any previous experience:

  • Level 1 will give the volunteers the skills they need to run a 30-minute survey in their own time.
  • Level 2 will give volunteers the skills they need to run a minimum of six surveys between April and October, using more complex methods.

The data collected by volunteers will be used to monitor the health of reptiles and their habitats and record the number of animals within the survey areas.

Nina Cornish, Research Ecologist, said: “We would like to encourage anyone who is interested in finding out more about Jersey’s reptiles to come along and see how they can get involved.  The data collected from citizen science schemes like Reptilewatch is used to evaluate the future trends and action necessary to conserve these protected species.

“We rely on the kind support and commitment of Wild Volunteers, who allow us to run more surveys and gain a better understanding of the health of Jersey’s environment so that we can protect it for future generations.”

Anyone who wants to attend the event can reserve a place online or contact Liz Walsh by email: l.walsh@gov.je. or by phone on 441628.

Please don’t forget to wear appropriate clothing and bring some boots and waterproofs to be able to participate in the field session.

March volunteer activity

Sunday 8th March 2020 –– St Clement’s Farm, La Grande Route de Saint Clement 10:00-13.00

From Jersey Conservation Volunteers

Task The Jersey Conservation Volunteers are certainly doing their bit for the Climate Emergency this season, and this Sunday, 8th March, we will be joining Jersey Trees for Life

Since 2007 Jersey Trees for Life, in partnership with the Island’s environmental and conservation community, has planted over 50,000 trees and hedgerow whips as part of their ongoing hedgerow campaign. They have been replanting and restoring Jersey’s hedgerows and farmland trees for the benefit of the Island’s biodiversity, as well as providing valuable food and wildlife corridors.

Using the latest priority tree planting routes, Island wildlife and mammal survey data, we have plotted connecting areas accordingly.

This event will focus on several of these priority planting routes, connecting directly with previous planting projects and designed to maximize food corridors as well as providing food for pollinators throughout the season.

Please meet at 10.15 am to enable us to walk the short distance (about 5 minutes) to the planting site. We will finish for 1pm.

If you have any questions, or if you wish to be added to the Jersey Conservation Volunteers email list, please contact either Julia Clively (tel: 441600; j.clively@gov.je) or Jon Parkes (tel: 483193; jon.parkes@nationaltrust.je).

The site Jersey phone directory Map 17, GG21 and Google maps here

Parking There is limited parking at St Clement’s Farm, La Grande Route de Saint Clement by kind permission of Mrs D. Mossop. Please car share if you can!

Tools needed Please bring a garden spade if you have one, and gloves.

Clothing needed Please dress for the weather, coats, sturdy boots/wellies and waterproofs may well be needed!

Children All are welcome, young or old although we do ask that volunteers under 16 years of age directly supervised by a parent or guardian.

Refreshments At the end of a hard morning’s work, Kim will treat everyone to her renowned home-made cake and a cuppa.

See you there!

The Pollinator Project has launched

By Sarah Maguire, Jersey Biodiversity Centre, Education and Outreach Officer

The Pollinator Project.JE has launched in Jersey which aims to help Jersey’s pollinators and their habitats. Pollinators move pollen from the flower to another flower, this results in fertilization that produces fruit and seeds. Without pollinators we would not get the reproduction of plants that create food and habitats for humans and other animal species. Pollinators are key for our survival with food security relying on their pollinating skills, so protecting them and helping to improve their environment is vital. Guernsey launched their pollinator project in 2017 and Jersey’s team are working alongside Guernsey and the other Channel Islands to replicate their success bringing together a variety of organisations to help.

Pollinator is a term that encompasses a wide range of species. Our focus is on pollinating insects and they may include many different species of insects such as hoverflies, beetles, flies, butterflies and moths. The decline in pollinating insects has also resulted in a decline in the number of birds across the UK with an 8% decline since 1970. The Pollinator Project will work to address a number of risks associated by disease and invasive species, such as Asian hornets. We will work together in partnership with other groups to support pollinators across the island.

The pollinator project will involve educational work in schools, habitat management and monitoring to help identify our species and habitats so that we can begin to enhance what is already in existence.

Through 2019 we will be sharing information, advice and top tips. So, if you’re into gardening you could plant native pollinator friendly plants such as Lavender (Lavandula munstead), save a space for pollinator native plants in your garden. Soon enough you will see patches dedicated to pollinators popping up over our Island; in schools, parks and gardens, work places and the countryside.

Let us know what pollinators you have spotted by sending a record to the Jersey Biodiversity Centre. This information will be added to a pollinator map for the island. We will also be running dedicated surveys of pollinators in the newly created pollinator patches. For the time being let us know what you’ve seen and add photos to your record to help with the verification of the species.

For more information on the project and how you can get involved please visit pollinatorproject.gg

#PollinatorProjectJE        #Pollinators        #WildFlowers

February volunteer activity postponed

JCV February volunteer activity at Sorel

Sunday 9th task postponed until 23rd February.

Due to the prospect of storm Ciara hitting on Sunday, we have decided to postpone the event until Sunday 23rd February at the same time of 10.15am for a 10.30am start.

We apologise for any disappointment, but the Met Office has advised that they are expecting gusts of 60mph and driving rain, which is not suitable conditions for the task and does pose issues regarding safety.

Thanks for your understanding and see you on 23rd February.

The NTJ Lands Team

Wild About Jersey

Natural Environment

February volunteer activity

Sunday 9th February 2020 –– Mourier Valley, St John 10:30-13.00

From Jersey Conservation Volunteers

Task This Sunday will be first opportunity for the JCV to get involved with the exciting Mourier Valley re-wilding project. Help the National Trust for Jersey and Jersey Trees for Life fulfil their most ambitious tree planting scheme ever, planting over 6,000 trees over three years. All plants and materials have been generously sponsored by Jersey Electricity and Jersey Water.

If you have any questions, or if you wish to be added to the Jersey Conservation Volunteers email list, please contact either Julia Clively (tel: 441600; j.clively@gov.je) or Jon Parkes (tel: 483193; jon.parkes@nationaltrust.je).

The site Jersey Phone Directory Map 3, R2 and Google Maps here

Parking There is car parking at Sorel Point, at the top car park or down by the Point.

Meet at the Sorel Point – top public car park at 10am to allow us to walk over to the site and start work for 10.30am. We will finish for 1pm.

Tools needed Depending on turnout, we may be short on spades, so please bring spades and gloves if you have any.

Clothing needed Please dress for the weather and bear in mind how exposed the site is on the North Coast. 

Children All are welcome, young or old although we do ask that volunteers under 16 years of age are directly supervised by a parent or guardian.

Refreshments Kim will be setting up her pop-up cafe to treat you all when work finishes at about 12.30.

See you there!

Garden bird time!

This weekend, 1st and 2nd February sees the 19th annual Jersey Great Garden Bird Survey (we started in 2002) in conjunction with Action for Wildlife Jersey and the Jersey Evening Post. There goes the weather! Remember the Beast From the East? Apparently (so the UK’s tabloids would have us believe) expect the Pest From the West! Whatever the weather, please count the birds in your garden (instructions below) and use the form which you can download here.

This annual count of the birds in the Island’s gardens has proven invaluable to our understanding of what is happening with many of our favourite species, the ones we often share our daily lives with and cherish. After all, and this may bypass the occasional world leader, what is happening in the birds’ world is happening in ours! 

Method

The method of the count is very straight forward. Basically you just need to look out into the garden for a few minutes (I just look out the kitchen window) and write down what birds you see and the maximum number of each species. And, of course, red squirrels count again as birds this year. Just for one weekend!

Once you’ve counted the birds (and squirrels) on your chosen day please fill out the form (here) and email to BOTE at birdsote@gmail.com or drop off at the JEP office. Alternatively you can fill out the form in the JEP or pick up a form from one of the Island’s garden centres (Ransoms, St Peters, Animal Kingdom or Pet Cabin at Le Quesne’s) and leave it with them.

During last year’s count (read more here) the Top 16 birds recorded were (average per reporting garden):

  1. House sparrow 6.9
  2. Chaffinch 1.8
  3. Wood pigeon 1.77
  4. Starling 1.75
  5. Great tit 1.6
  6. Blue tit 1.6
  7. Collared dove 1.4
  8. Magpie 1.4
  9. Robin 1.3
  10. Blackbird 1.0
  11. Greenfinch 0.33
  12. Song thrush 0.26
  13. Pheasant 0.22
  14. Blackcap 0.16
  15. Great spotted woodpecker 0.12
  16. Jay 0.12.

Our honorary bird, the red squirrel, at 0.4 per garden, would have been 11th.

So, please take part this weekend, enjoy the birds (and squirrels) and consider yourself citizen scientists!

 

Hedge Fund Project 2019/20

The National Trust for Jersey are looking to appoint a volunteer planter to assist in the planting of bare root hedging and tree whips (45-60 cm) on designated field boundaries working eastwards between the Zoo and Rozel Manor/Fliquet.

  • Once planted the whips will be fitted with spiral guards or trees shelters as appropriate
  • The majority of the 5,000 holes to plant the whips have been dug to allow them to be slot planted. Spiral protection has to be fitted to a lot of the hedging that has already been planted and this type of work is less arduous and would suit those who are not so physically strong
  • There is the potential of work in the summer as well, maintaining the planting in order to control competing vegetation.

The appointee will be responsible to Conrad Evans – Project Coordinator or National Trust Supervisor in his absence. The appointee will need to be:

Responsible for 

  • Own transport to site and meeting at designated working site which will vary as progress is made
  • You will need to wear appropriate clothing, gloves and footwear and provide food and drink for your own welfare
  • Looking after the tools, plants and materials that will be provided
  • Complying with the risk assessment that will be given to all volunteers.

Key responsibilities 

  • Working with minimal supervision from time to time taking care of your own health and safety in line with the likely working conditions to be expected
  • Be respectful of the land, environment and any livestock encountered
  • Deal politely with any public interest
  • To have the ability to work as part of a team to a high standard.

Experience required

  • Being physically fit and able is a vital condition of the task
  • Basic gardening, horticulture or labouring
  • Ability to work under own initiative having been given initial instruction.

 Hours 

  • Monday to Friday between 0830 and 1530
  • Minimum of 4 hours per session to ensure efficiency and a reasonable level of production.

Contact and any necessary medical details will be required but ALL information held with be kept in the strictest confidence.

If you are interested please contact Conrad Evans

Tel: 07797 903895 / email: Conrad.Evans@nationaltrust.je

The National Trust for Jersey, The Elms, La Chève Rue, St Mary JE3 3EN

January volunteer activity

Sunday 12th January 2020 –– Gorey 10:30-13.00

From Jersey Conservation Volunteers

Happy New Year!!

Fancy working off some of those festive excesses and doing something good for wildlife? Come and join us!

Task This Sunday, we will be revisiting a project that was started last year to improve habitat for wall lizards and wild strawberry.

The Gorey area holds the largest colony of wall lizards in Jersey, Devon Gardens is a public garden in Gorey that is home to several important Jersey species. The walls provide great habitat for the lizards and wild strawberry but are becoming overgrown with vegetation, threatening the habitat so we will work to remove areas of dense ivy. The overall aim is to create a park area specifically designed for the wall lizards as well as creating some human habitats where people can sit and soak up the great views of the Castle and Grouville Bay.

If you have any questions, or if you wish to be added to the Jersey Conservation Volunteers email list, please contact either Julia Clively (tel: 441600; j.clively@gov.je) or Jon Parkes (tel: 483193; jon.parkes@nationaltrust.je).

The site (Jersey phone directory map 11, LL15 and Google maps here

Parking There is on-road parking as well as several public car parks nearby and parking on the pier.

Note: You may need a disc or scratch cards depending on where you park.

Meet at the bottom of the gardens, ready to start work at 10.30. We will be finished by 13.00.

Tools needed As always, we can supply some tools, but if you have a pair of gardening gloves, and cutting tools (e.g. pruning saw, loppers, secateurs) it would be helpful if you could bring them along with you.

Clothing needed Please dress for the weather and bring a pair of gardening gloves (though we can supply a pair if you don’t have them).  

Children All are welcome, young or old although we do ask that volunteers under 16 years of age are accompanied by an adult.

Refreshments Kim will be setting up her pop up cafe to treat you all when work finishes at about 12.30.

See you there!