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Picture1Kent Wildlife Trust, Half Term Fun – Rock and Fossil Day Leaders: Ray and Wendy Cooper and Diana Franks from Kent Geodiversity with assistance from Victoria Golding. An introduction to looking at rocks and fossils including a touch table, rock and fossil identification and a chance to work with microscopes to make up a collection of microfossils. Also put in your postcode to discover the rock type under your house.

Thursday 31st October 2013, 11.00am – 1.00pm and 1.30pm – 3.30pm, Tyland Barn, Maidstone, ME14 3BD. Suitable for ages 4 – 14 year olds. Contact: Dot Hughes Cost: Suggested donation of £3.00, Booking essential by telephoning 01622 662012 or emailing dot.hughes@kentwildlife.org.uk

Contact us
Kent Wildlife Trust
Tyland Barn
Sandling
Maidstone
Kent
ME14 3BD

Phone 01622 662012 Fax 01622 671390 or info@kentwildlife.org.uk

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false_false_widowsNews stories about false widow spiders are an annual occurrence, but this year the coverage has been far more persistent, with more sensationalised, unsubstantiated and downright nonsense stories than usual. With over 650 species of spider in the country but very limited public awareness there is little appreciation of the diversity of spiders, and any spiders vaguely resembling false widows (and some spiders looking nothing like false widows), are being identified as such by the press and subsequently members of the public, and vice versa since it seems fact-checking by journalists is rare. Having said that, false widows are fairly common and widespread in the South, and have been around for some time. Read More

kwthighcowWith the increasing amount and variety of livestock that the Trust owns or loans conservation grazing is becoming an increasingly important management tool. Thanks to recent project funding, many of the chalk downland reserves in the Darenth Valley are being grazed by sheep and cattle this winter, and this year for the first time we will be using goats to control invasive buddleia and silver birch at Sevenoaks Wildlife Reserve. Read More

golden ploverLate summer and early autumn at Oare Marshes have seen huge numbers of wading birds passing through on their annual migration to over-wintering locations.

During August and September counts in excess of 2,000 black-tailed godwit, 750 redshank, 150 dunlin,100 ringed plover, 200 golden plover and 50 curlew sandpipers have been recorded – the highest count of the latter for many years. Read More

Photo credit and copyright Sam Baylis

Photo credit and copyright Sam Baylis

Tue, 01/10/2013 – 7:30pm Illustrated talk by Malcolm Jennings. A look at the amazing communities of insects that live in the tiny worlds that surround us. Organised by North West Kent group. Venue location Mick Jagger Centre, Dartford Boys Grammar School, Shepherds Lane, Dartford, Kent, DA1 2JZ Suggested donation £2.50. Suitable for wheelchair users. Suitable for people with limited mobility. 01622 662012

Harpella forficella by Ross Newham

Harpella forficella by Ross Newham

A species of moth not previously seen in Kent and known only by its Latin name Harpella forficella has been discovered at Kent Wildlife Trust’s Holborough Marshes nature reserve, near Snodland. This striking cream and brown moth, native to Europe, was found by amateur naturalist and Trust volunteer, Ross Newham. Ross undertakes moth recording at a number of Trust reserves across West Kent, with all records helping to build up a detailed inventory of the species in the area. Using this information, conservation bodies can then study the biological records available to plan the management of sites. More

Dormouse copyright Ian Rickards

Dormouse copyright Ian Rickards

Kent Wildlife Trust is dismayed that, once again, the government has ignored its own policies meant to protect the natural environment, and has given permission for the destruction of 31 hectares of ancient woodland in order to extend Gallagher Aggregates’ Hermitage Lane quarry near Maidstone.

This irreplaceable habitat is known to support many rare and threatened species including dormice, six species of bat, birds and insects. More

03 De Bello CanzioJoin Kent Wildlife Trust on Bank Holiday Monday 27th May for BIGBURY REVEALED!
(Bigbury Nature Reserve, Harbledown. 10am – 4pm) – FREE entry.

Step back in time and experience Bigbury Camp as it was in 54BC. Meet up with the local Cantii tribe as they face the Roman invasion. Discover the hidden side of the recently restored Iron Age Hill Fort – a Scheduled Ancient Monument, thought to be the site of Caesar’s first battle. More

Kent Wildlife Trust is hosting an exciting series of family ‘Discovery Day’ events this May half-term at its Tyland Barn Visitor Centre, Sandling near Maidstone.

The Trust’s Community Education Officer, Mary Blackwell, said: “On Friday 31st May
from 10am – 12 noon and 1.30 – 3.30pm, our brand new Theatre of the Pond event will see trained actress and artist, Victoria Wainwright, helping intrepid budding performers to explore the wildlife in a pond before unleashing their creativity and creating a pond-life play! More

Swan by Jason SteelKent Wildlife Trust has launched its 6th annual Wildlife Photography Competition to encourage local residents to venture out this spring and summer to capture images of the natural assets of the ‘Garden of England’.

The four broad categories cover Fauna (mammals, insects, birds etc.), Flora (plants, trees, lichens, fungi etc.), Landscape, Coastline & People and Junior (aged 17 and under). Photographs can be taken at nature reserves, parks, schools, gardens, seaside etc., but must be in Kent. More

BioBlitz at Darland Banks nature reserve tonight, Gillingham ME7 3ER, 5pm – 9pm. Join scientists, naturalists and wildlife enthusiasts to help us count as many species as possible in four hours.

You don’t need to be an expert to help, you could also have a go with a bat detector, find our about the reserve and meet our cattle and horses and find out what they do for wildlife.

Parking is at the end of Darland Avenue, follow signes from there to the recording hub to get involved. Please telephone Lee or Alison on 01622 662012 with any queries.

Kent Wildlife Trust have a fantastic event for the week begining of the 27th May at Blean between Canterbury and Whitstable. Click on the link below to visit their page with all of the information you need. Fun and learning activities for all the family.

http://www.kentwildlifetrust.org.uk/whats/blean-woodland-festival
blean_festival_queens_of_the_forest

Highland cowsMajestic golden Highland cattle are set to become a familiar part of the Holborough Marshes landscape.

The livestock is being introduced by local grazier, Norman Coles of Roundoak, to the Kent Wildlife Trust nature reserve, situated on the southern banks of the River Medway between Snodland and Halling. More

Adder (c) Jason Steel

Adder (c) Jason Steel

Kent Wildlife Trust welcomes the recognition of Lodge Hill – earmarked as a 5,000 home development site – as a nationally important site for wildlife by Natural England, the Government’s advisor on the natural environment.

On 13th March Natural England, the Government’s advisor on the natural environment, notified Chattenden Woods and Lodge Hill on the Hoo Peninsula in Kent as a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI).

SSSIs comprise some of the country’s best wildlife sites, including our most spectacular, important and beautiful habitats, and Natural England has a duty to designate such areas under national legislation that protects them for future generations.

Chattenden Woods, a large area of ancient woodland and grassland, was originally designated as a SSSI in 1984 under the Wildlife & Countryside Act. More recently, investigations into the adjacent Lodge Hill site as part of proposals for a significant housing development, have highlighted that this area is also very important for the same reasons.

The site supports communities of bats (six species), lizards, grass snakes, adders, slow worms, newts, frogs, toads, badgers and rare insects such as the shrill carder-bee.

It has a significant breeding bird population, most notably nightingales, which were found to be widespread across the proposed development site, and the new SSSI supports at least 1.3% of the national population of this declining species. The new SSSI encompasses the old SSSI and the important areas of Lodge Hill. More

This is a fairly short video showing the importance of the type of countryside we have here in Kent. And in Kent we are lucky enough to have a larger range of environment types than most other counties in the UK, from chalky grassland to marshland and mud flat, from light sandy soils to heavy clay, we have something of everything.

Please watch this video, some of the flowers would leave you believing that you were in the tropics

Kent Wildlife Trust, the county’s leading conservation charity, has warned that any airport development in the Thames Estuary would be catastrophic for fragile ecosystems and wildlife, and that it is prepared to fight any proposals.

This is in the wake of news that the Government may include options for an airport in the Thames Estuary in a draft policy framework for UK aviation that is due to go out for public consultation in March this year.

Chief Executive of Kent Wildlife Trust, John Bennett, said: “The Thames and Medway estuaries are extremely rich in wildlife and are internationally important for nature conservation. An airport here, whether coastal or offshore, will be catastrophic for wildlife communities.

“The impact on breeding, feeding and migratory birds will be huge, but there is also a wider community that includes wildflowers, bees, water voles and brown hares. Offshore, there are important habitats for fish and seals.

“Thames Estuary Airport options must be withdrawn from the draft policy framework for UK aviation.

“Ten years ago, Kent Wildlife Trust, with many others, successfully campaigned against plans for an airport at Cliffe Marshes in North Kent. However, the area is still under considerable pressure. If necessary, we are prepared to fight once more to protect our natural heritage.”

Kent Wildlife Trust is dismayed at the proposals for an airport covering the eastern end of the Hoo peninsula. More

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