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Wild Summer 3 - Minibeast Safari

Posted: Monday 10th August 2015 by Joe.P

Minibeast safari materialsMinibeast Safari

Wild Summer volunteer Alice Keogh reports on the third week of our wild summer at EcoPark as families were invited to go on a minibeast safari and make clay creatures thanks to the support of players of People's Postcode Lottery.

Over the 5th, 6th and 7th of August 33 families flocked to EcoPark to discover the miniature beasts which surround us every day. Even some brief showers did not diminish the enthusiasm of parents and children alike who were eager to get started on their minibeast hunt.

After a brief talk of the dos and don'ts of hunting minibeasts including not picking them up with our hands (to avoid slug slimy fingers!) and not capturing insects which can sting. Families picked up their minibeast hunting gear and equipped with a bug pot, bug stick and of course a checklist of creatures to be found around EcoPark, they set off. 

Fantastic environment that's safe and fun.

Children rooted through the long grasses around the park alongside watching for creatures flying about the ponds and even searching within the willow tunnel for hidden beasts. Thinking about where different kinds of creatures lived and why was crucial to discovering all the minibeasts. By looking under cool damp logs they discovered slugs and woodlice whilst looking under leaves uncovered caterpillars. A variety of beasts were found by families including: cardinal beetles, wolf spiders, an elusive dragon fly and even a newt!

Great place for nature and for kids to explore. 

After they'd discovered all the beasts to be found around the park the children helped themselves to clay in order to make their own minibeasts. Children created beautiful and imaginative clay creations including whole hordes of creatures! Children even used sticks and leaves to carve their creatures out of clay as well as using them for wings or feelers. Once finished they wrapped up their creatures to take home and dry out until they were ready to be painted as a memory of a great day out.

The EcoPark serves as a hidden oasis of nature within an urban area for children to engage with and discover lots of wonderful creatures that they would otherwise not have discovered.

My wild summer continues next Wednesday with a Scavenger Hunt! Come along and see if you can find all the wild and wonderful things to get your goodie bags.

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