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Biodiversity @ Blacknest

Blacknest Forest School, enjoys the many benefits of being a neighbour to Windsor Great Park; Site of Special Scientific Interest and Special Area of Conservation. We support their aim to protect and strengthen biodiversity for the future by encouraging all the children to enjoy and learn to love nature.

Nature is not just beautiful and richly diverse – it essential for life on earth.  We humans are a part of this natural world, part of a web of life – plants, insects, wildlife, trees, air, soil – and we need to live in harmony and mutual interdependence with nature.

Unfortunately, we have failed to do this. Through ongoing selfishness and lack of understanding, human activity continues to threaten biodiversity as we kill off insects, birds and animals too. When we pollute the earth or take more from the it than nature can readily replenish, we threaten our own part in the web of life. By ignoring climate change the damage is greatly increased.

It is time to put that right. So, at Forest School, we inspire the next generation to engage positively with nature by making it fun for them to learn how to better protect the world in which they must live.

We ran a mini ecologist course before lockdown which enabled the children to explore all aspects of this web of life for themselves by delving into the soil, exploring water and pond life, making compost, bug hotels, feeding birds, planting trees and much more.  We plan to do this again in spring 2021.

Insects – a keystone part of the web

Insects make up the bulk of known life on Earth they play essential roles in the proper functioning of all ecosystems. Without them, we will put in danger multitudes of amphibians, birds, bats, reptiles, small mammals and fish that rely on insects for food.

A third of the food crops we grow need insects to pollinate them

Without insects you lose one of the key building-blocks of biodiversity and many of our beloved birds, mammals and other species will simply not survive.

So the loss of about 60% of insects in the UK in the last 50 years is very worrying. More than 40% of insect species are declining with a third endangered. Butterflies and moths are among the worst hit. Safeguarding the remaining insect population is really important.

It’s not too late to act together to put this right.   At Forest School we show what we must do: 

 

Learn what is there and marvel at finding species like butterflies or beetles

♦Leave areas of garden uncut. Don’t be too tidy create areas for insects.

♦Plant lavender and many other wild-flowers. which insects like to eat like

♦Avoid using chemicals and pesticides in your garden

♦Put out water for insects and wildlife.

♦Create a compost bin in which insects like worms can flourish –they reduce the waste going to landfill and can make fantastic soil to be used in your garden or on your vegetables.

♦Build a bug hotel.  Expand the web of life within your garden.

Reversing the Decline of Insects