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Going Wild about Scotland in April

19/05/2017 in RZSS

April has been a great month for the Wild about Scotland team. During the school holidays, we were part of the Edinburgh International Science Festival. When schools returned, we visited schools in Clackmannanshire, Falkirk and Stirling. The last week involved our first trip to the Isles of Islay and Jura.

Wild about Scotland bus in the Edinburgh Grassmarket as part of EISFApril began with the Edinburgh International Science Festival (EISF). The first stop for the Wild about Scotland bus was a few days parked in the Grassmarket where the public were welcomed on board the bus to look at all the exciting resources and activities we offer. It was a brilliant start to the EISF, and we had some great views with the castle overlooking us. The following week we were parked at Summerhall for four days. During the week, our new volunteers visited the bus to discover what Wild about Scotland is all about. The new volunteers did fantastically well and were able to help the public with all the questions they had to ask. 

For the Easter weekend the bus was parked in RZSS Edinburgh Zoo which meant we got the chance to add some Easter fun to the bus. Overall, we had over 1,800 visitors on board the bus during the EISF which is a fantastic number and we hope to build on that with the events to come.

After a busy Easter, we were ready for the start of a new term visiting schools. Our first week back included several mini-beast sessions with all the students getting stuck in discovering what creatures could be found in their school grounds. It was great learning just how much biodiversity you can find hiding away, even in the middle of a city

During the last week of April, we were away for Wild about Scotland’s first ever trip to the beautiful islands of Islay and Jura. Our journey across started with an unexpected hail storm, and high winds meant we had to reverse the bus onto the ferry - superb driving from Dave! We had a brilliant time touring around the primary schools on Islay and an extra ferry trip across to Jura in the car to visit Small Isles Primary School. Luckily the weather cleared up and we got to explore all that the islands had to offer- striking scenery, a wee dram of whisky and of course plenty of wildlife including seals, lapwings, red and roe deer just to name a few!

Wild about Scotland car on the Isle of Jura

We finished the week off with a visit to Knapdale forest in Argyll, a lovely tranquil forest and the site of the Scottish Beaver Trial. We were given a guided tour of the area by the staff at the Heart of Argyll Wildlife Organisation, visited their wonderful visitor centre and saw plenty of signs of beavers being active in the area. It is well worth a visit if you find yourself west of Glasgow.

Looking ahead, May is going to be another busy month for us, involving school visits in Edinburgh and Stirling, then a long drive to the very north of Scotland and a ferry over to Orkney, a trip to Oban and between that a visit to the Glasgow Science Centre as part of their Bug Count week. Busy, busy, busy…

See you next month,

Kirsty and Rosie

Wild about Scotland Education Officers


Top comments from schools this month…

“The hunt for minibeasts engaged children and developed enthusiasm for rest of session.” Fallin PS

“Range of hands on resources and friendly staff.” Bowmore PS

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