Welcome to the November edition of the Wildwood newsletter.
In this packed addition we welcome some new animals to the park, have some great Christmas gift ideas and also let you know about some seasonal changes to the park.
If you wish to know more about any of our stories or Wildwood in general, then please feel free to email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Thank you for your continued support!
The Annual Lacey Lecture
Wildwood's Peter Smith was given the honour of delivering the Annual Lacey Lecture for the North Wales Wildlife Trust this year, focusing on Beavers - A plan for Wales’s Ecological Renaissance.
The lecture was held in honour of W.S. (Bill) Lacey, Lecturer in Botany at University College of North Wales & Founder of the North Wales Wildlife Trust.
Christmas at Wildwood
Christmas is almost upon us, with less than two weeks to go to the start of our legendary hand-crafted Santa's Grotto. We still have a few spaces left and also some very limited dates for an exclusive Twilight Tea with Santa. Email us at email@example.com or phone 01227 209621 to find out more or to make a booking.
Natural Skin Products and Remedies
Want to learn how to make some of your own skin cosmetics and remedies from natural ingredients? It's safer, cheaper and healthier for you than buying shop-made products. You can even start your own beauty line and make some great Christmas presents! Join us on Sunday the 26th November at Wildwood and take away what you make on the day along with a host of new skills.
Should wolves be reintroduced?
The debate about whether or not we should reintroduce wolves back into the British countryside is spreading fast! Long time wolf lover Anneka Svenska appeared on Good Morning Britain today. In the short time allocated, Anneka spoke passionately about why we should be reintroducing wolves as part of a greater rewilding plan, and began to discuss how this can be achieved.
Open all hours
On this Thursday 23rd November our shop will be open from 4pm to 6:30pm for a special one-off event. We'll have light refreshments to enjoy, our friendly staff available to help with all of your shopping needs AND for every purchase over £5, you will receive a free Winter Tombola ticket to win an instant prize! * Park closes at 4pm, entry to the park is not required when only visiting the shop.
Festive Willow Wreaths
Interested in making some festive treats this year? On 9th December you can use locally grown colourful willow and dogwood stems to make a re-usable wreath base then decorate it with natural materials, all sourced locally. Take it home to hang on your front door or as a table decoration. Materials provided.
Ravens on the move
Our raven pair has moved to temporary accommodation opposite the rat barn, whilst their enclosure undergoes refurbishment. Ike and Bena are settling in well to their new surroundings, continuing to show off their displays of affection and making their presence known with a range of noisy calls to one another.
Wolf Platform and Implant
Work continues to develop rapidly on the new wolf enclosure. Our rangers have been busy building a new viewing platform that stretches ten metres over the wolves' new home. The construction also features a tunnel of windows on the ground floor to help spot our wolves and make you feel really part of the pack. With plans to birth a new wolf pack for 2018, our female wolf, Nuna, had her implant removed this month so that she can hopefully produce pups next year with our handsome male, Odin. The procedure went smoothly, and wolf keepers will be monitoring any signs of breeding behaviour between the pair. Fingers crossed!
With the highly successful breeding of red squirrels this year, a new female has joined our group of residing ladies near the Nocturnal House. We’re hoping for more babies next year!
We also welcomed two brown female Soay ewes to our sheep paddock, and they are proving excellent grazers in our woodland setting. Keepers have yet to choose their names, though Winifred and Vera are proving popular amongst the team! Our male, Rambo, is more than pleased with his new female companions!
Our flying team has expanded with the arrival of gorgeous Long-Eared Owl, Betty. She was born in May and taking well to her Falconers here at Wildwood. We’re hoping to have her in our demonstrations next summer, providing this year's enforced national quarantine due to Avian Flu isn't repeated in 2018. She is now settling in along with our other owls Barnaby and Rusty, kestrel Frank and buzzard, Maud. Just look at those big, beautiful eyes!
With the darker and colder evenings setting in, our dormice and hedgehogs are almost in full hibernation mode. Don’t forget you can still see our retired dormice in our heated Nocturnal House, though you’ll have to wait until spring before our hedgehogs resurface again.
Our bears are also going into torpor and are having whole days when they are not leaving their bedrooms at all - which means that the bears, who had never hibernated until last year, are continuing to find their natural rhythm and are very content animals. * Please note - until they become active again, our bear bridge viewing platform will be closed.
Charter of the Forest
This November saw the 800 year anniversary of the first Charter of the Forest. Ready for a bit of history? In 1216, King Henry III took the throne after the death of his father King John and, under the guidance of the famous medieval knight William Marshall, put his seal to the Charter of the Forest in November of 1217. It was a companion document to the Magna Carta from which it evolved, and re-established for free men rights of access to the royal forest that had been eroded by William the Conqueror and his heirs.
- Under the reign of King John, about a third of the country was royal forest, and the penalties imposed for forest offences were a major source of revenue for the king.
- The charter aimed to address this by reducing the amount of land under royal control.
- The charter also banned capital punishments for forest offences such as poaching and hunting deer.
Genomes 25 Project
To commemorate the Wellcome Trust - Sanger Institute turning 25 next year, the Institute and its collaborators, of which The Wildwood Trust are very proud to be included, are sequencing 25 new genomes. A genome is an organism’s complete set of DNA, including all of its genes. From the blackberry to the robin, bush cricket to brown trout, the 25 species to be chosen all reside in the UK and represent the richness of species in this country. Twenty species have already been decided, and the remaining five will be voted for by the public and school children as part of ‘I’m a Scientist, Get Me Out of Here’. Find out more at https://25genomes.imascientist.org.uk/