Stepping up for nature

Children and their parents across West Sussex are being encouraged by the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds to get outdoors this autumn and explore the season’s nature in their neighbourhood.

The conservation charity wants families to ‘Step up for Nature’ and take part in its Changes through Autumn Wildsquare survey.

Families are asked to look for and record fungi, leaves which have changed colour and the wildlife that you might come across at this time of year.

The seasonal survey is one of several that the RSPB runs each year and can be done wherever there is nature - in a garden, park, woodland or playground, or even whilst out on a walk with the family.

Taking part is simple. All parents need to do is register at www.rspb.org.uk/wildsquare and download the survey form. Once the children have done the survey, which takes between 30 minutes to an hour, their results can be entered through the website.

Getting children inspired by nature at an early age is really important if we want them to care about the environment and conservation in the future.

A Wildsquare survey is a great way of getting them interested in wildlife, as well as a healthy and fun family activity.

For this autumn-themed survey we want children to tell us things like what kind of fungi they can find and also what creatures they have found hiding underneath rocks, stones or logs.

The more children and families that take part in Wildsquare, the clearer the picture we can get of our autumn wildlife.

Doing the survey is one of several activities people can do as part of the RSPB’s Stepping Up For Nature campaign. For details of other steps you can take visit www.rspb.org.uk/steppingup.

The RSPB’s ‘Stepping Up for Nature’ movement encourages everybody to take steps, no matter how big or small, in order to help protect nature and ensure the Government meets its target to halt the decline in biodiversity by 2020.

The Changes through Autumn Wildsquare survey runs until October 31, 2012.

The RSPB speaks out for birds and wildlife, tackling the problems that threaten our environment. We are the largest wildlife conservation organisation in Europe with over one million members.

Wildlife and the environment face many threats. Our work is focused on the species and habitats that are in the greatest danger.

Our work is driven by the passionate belief that birds and wildlife enrich people’s lives; the health of bird populations is indicative of the health of the planet, on which the future of the human race depends; we all have a responsibility to protect wildlife.

The RSPB has more than one million members, over 18,000 volunteers, 1,300 staff, more than 200 nature reserves, nine regional offices, a UK headquarters, three national offices - and one vision: to work for a better environment rich in birds and wildlife.

Visit www.rspb.org.uk for more information

SAMANTHA STOKES

RSPB South East regional office, New Road, Brighton