Arundel WWT visitor centre celebrated World Wetlands Day 2020 with a Ramsar Ride boat trip gliding peacefully through our beautiful channels on an electric boat. The guided talk on board explained about the Ramsar convention and why we have a ‘Ramsar Hide’ on the reserve. We talked about wetland biodiversity, climate change and were greatly encouraged by the depth of knowledge of our younger passengers. We highlighted the work of WWT and returned to the jetty inspired by what we had seen and heard to support and promote wetland conservation.
From the serenity of the boat trip we splashed into our Biodash! Workshop. Families joined us for an action packed session of exploring the reserve and discovering its deeper delights using all of our senses for maximum impact! We had a speed dip in the pond discovering an amazing range of creatures including some dazzling damselfly nymphs and shimmering greater water boatmen. We rambled to our Ramsar hide to spot snipe, shelduck and lapwing.
Along the way we explored the shapes and textures of our winter landscape here at Arundel and appreciated the springy bounce of the moss, the range of colours and form of the lichen, the feel of the seed heads and the swelling buds in the hedgerows.
We stopped at our secluded log circle for some soundscaping where we focussed our listening on natural sounds surrounding us. Then we jumped up and flipped our logs over and checked out the minibeasts hiding underneath. Wriggly worms, scurrying centipedes and brilliant beetles gave us a glimpse into their dark damp hidey holes.
Our beautiful wildlife garden rounded off our Biodash! as we collected a rainbow of colour swatches from the plants showing how vibrant and glorious winter is on the reserve. The plants also gave us some evocative smells. We refreshed our lungs with some deep breathes and tasted the wetland air.
Biodash! was a fun immersion into the biodiversity on our wetland and showed families different ways to discover even more on their next visit to a wetland.
Other activities on the day included some ‘toadally’ awesome toad craft highlighting the toad migrations happening on the reserve as they emerge from their hibernation and making some mini bug hotels packed with reed stems, inviting little friends to stay and play.
See the listing for this event on the official World Wetlands Day map.