Conservation and community-building charity Stroud Valleys Project is hosting the Landscapes of the Lark festival this year – and they’re looking for people who’d like to get involved.
The festival, which runs from March to September, will include a series of Citizen Science and Citizen Humanities events, with the aim involving up to 2,000 residents and visitors with the precious landscapes within Stroud’s valleys that play host to one of the UK’s best-loved birds, the Skylark.
Festival organiser Sharon Gardham said: “We’d love people to become advocates for these landscapes, their traditional management, and their wildlife.
“We want to reach as many people as possible, so we’re offering some brilliant activities through spring and summer, helping people to discover the breadth and wonder of our commons, including expert-led walks and talks, school activities, activities for students, and art exhibitions and workshops.
“Our commons provide a rare and disappearing home for many amazing species. Traditional farming is vitally important to the health of these grasslands, which support so many wildflowers, invertebrates and bird species, including our iconic but red-listed Skylarks.
“Landscapes of the Lark will give everyone an opportunity to join in and find out more about the wonder of our local wildlife, while learning about the role that they can play in helping the commons thrive for current and future generations to enjoy.”
Landscapes of the Lark kicks off with three family-friendly Skylark Spotting sessions on the three Stroud commons; as Sharon says, “We’re looking for keen citizen scientists to help us understand where Skylarks like to nest. We’ll show you how to identify Skylarks and record them using the iRecord app.
“Our first session is on Friday 7 April on Rodborough Common; the second is on Sunday 9 April on Minchinhampton Common, and the last is on Selsley Common on Monday 10 April. All sessions run between 8.45am and 10.30am – perfect for energetic little ones who are up with the lark!”
Book your slot online at stroudvalleysproject.org/events – sessions are free, but booking is essential.