Opening up the natural heritage of Leicester's waterways
The Young Ecology Adventurers programme provides opportunities for young people from Leicester's Somali community to learn about the natural environment and build their skills and confidence trying out new things and overcoming challenges. Working with professional instructors, volunteers, some brilliant partners and the wonderful waterways in Leicester and Leicestershire, the programme is opening up new horizons for young people. Find out more about the programme. We started in the summer of 2017: follow our progress below and on Twitter and Instagram...
July 2017, Week One was our induction day when everyone including came together for the first time at St Matthew's Neighbourhood Centre to learn more about the programme and to ask questions.
Week Two: the first group of young people set off from Leicester Outdoor Pursuits Centre to practice their canoe skills and how to avoid the trees, stinging nettles and crashing into each other!
Week Three: this week we went in Kata Kanus with 6 people in each, to Belgrave Lock. Volunteer lock keepers explained how the locks worked and we practiced opening and closing the lock gates. The river was high and flowing quite strongly so it took us much longer to get to the lock than we expected.
Week Four: we learned from wildlife graduate and CRT volunteer Chloe about transects and how to do these on the river. Then we split into two groups and made our way up and downstream to record the wildlife and vegetation. Sometimes it was quite difficult keeping the canoe in the right direction as well as noting down the riverbank activity!
Week Five: A group of us learned about camera traps and how they work. We practiced setting them up inside before canoeing to four locations close to the Leicester Outdoor Pursuits Centre where we installed them. We will collect them and look at the results next week.
We had to change our plans or collecting the camera traps early on Saturday morning. They were collected later on the Saturday afternoon. And the results are in! Here are some of our pics and videos from four camera traps we set along the River Soar near to Leicester Outdoor Pursuits Centre. What we found was that some locations were much better than others; some cameras had leaves blowing in front of them, and some had more human activity (boats and canoes) than wildlife.
Egret from Lily Cam
Mallard from Lily Cam
Canada Geese from Trunk Cam
Coot from Lily Cam
SOCOPA 2017 Site designed by Jon Boagey; photos Jamie Chuaiprasit