A Wilder Year Ahead for Washington Wildlife Group

Washington Wildlife Group formed in April 2017 with the support of Durham Wildlife Trust. The nature enthusiasts meet on the last Wednesday of every month, to learn about conservation issues and the wildlife in their area.

Their monthly meetings, held at Washington Old Hall, are a great opportunity for those who have a passion for nature to meet like-minded people, share experiences, gain new skills and friendships.

Having enjoyed a programme of monthly guest speakers last year, the group are now planning more outdoor field trips and are looking forward to undertaking practical conservation work and recording, reporting and surveying the nature on their doorstop this year. The group would also like to take responsibility for looking after local wildlife areas.

The outdoor activities will allow the group to achieve their aim of becoming ‘a well-recognised and respected organisation in local nature conservation work’ with the information and data to help protect the region and support DWT’s work.

The group, which now consists of eleven members, was set up by Nick Jobson. Nick explains: “When I retired in 2016 I wanted to do something positive for wildlife in my local area and hopefully involve other local people. As I was a member of DWT and would be looking for support with my venture, the logical move seemed to be to set up a DWT local group.”

From promoting the group in the DWT magazine and website to arranging some of the guest speakers and now identifying surveying opportunities, Nick explained DWT has been vital to getting the group up and running.

Emily Routledge, Membership Development Officer at DWT, explains: “Local groups enable us to reach out to a wider audience, they make a real difference in promoting and supporting our work. Their talks and activities allow existing, and potential new members, to learn more about our work and get involved too. It’s been great to help Nick and the group get established and I look forward to seeing them evolve this year.”

Nick also explained this is very much a collaborative welcoming group with an opportunity for anyone, regardless of their age or wildlife knowledge, to join and contribute. This was apparent at their last meeting where ideas, wildlife resources and mince pies were being shared around the table.

At their next meeting, 7:30pm on Wednesday 31st January, they will be joined by a guest speaker from ERIC North East who work with wildlife recording groups, organisations and individuals to collate, manage and improve access to the biological records of the region. More details can be found here: https://durhamwt.com/event/washington-wildlife-group/?instance_id=46

John Grundy from DWT’s Revealing Reptiles will also be a guest speak this year

The group are hoping this year to attract more members too. If you’re interested in wildlife in the Washington area why not join them in discovering, enjoying and protecting it?

Please contact Nick Jobson for more information about the group at: mail@durhamwt.co.uk or nicktayjob@gmail.com.

You can find the group on Facebook too: https://www.facebook.com/groups/469230010111473/about/