What we do
We set out to explore the wonders of the natural world - plants, animals, rocks, land forms, climate, natural forces and their relationships with man. Our activities include field trips, indoor sessions and museum visits. New members are very welcome, especially those with some expertise in any of the above subjects.
Once a month we meet to explore as much of nature in Northern Ireland as we can – from local areas like Crawfordsburn, where we see all kinds of fungi in October (like the bracket fungus in the picture) - to the Copeland Islands to see the Manx Shearwater burrows.
Our monthly outings are outdoors from March until November, with indoor presentations or lectures in January and February.
The bluebells at Whitepark Bay are a sight to warm the heart on a cold day, and the geology of Northern Ireland is very diverse spanning hundreds of millions of years, and environments – everything from hot desert conditions to freezing Ice Ages.
We’ve been to Rathlin Island to see the puffins, to Kearney Village to marvel at the power of plate tectonics 450 million years ago, and to Oxford Island in spring to see great crested grebes and all manner of birds.
Subject to demand and feasibility we may in future consider overnight or longer outings, perhaps to explore the Burren in Co Clare, with its limestone features, its wildflowers and its fish chowder; or Co Fermanagh to see the caves and the World Heritage Site, or even Gold Panning in the Sperrins.
All new ideas are welcome. and if you have a passion for anything Nature, we’d love you to share it with us..
NB: for outside visits please wear warm, waterproof clothing and strong shoes or boots. Bring a warm drink, binoculars (if you have them) and a small magnifying glass for flora and fauna.
You may find the following to be of interest:
- The Magic Of Mushrooms - YouTube – a video about all aspects of mushrooms which you never knew!
- A talk about Lough Erne by Kirstin Lemon, GSNI (view anytime)
- Useful Websites:
A number of areas in Northern Ireland have applied for UNESCO Global Geopark status, which should be granted in the coming months. (There is currently only one such area – Marble Arch caves – a Geopark since 2001).
Two other areas currently under consideration include Lough Erne in Co Fermanagh, and Mourne, Ring of Gullion and Strangford.
www.lelp.org.uk for information on Lough Erne.
www.strangfordlough.org has lots of interesting information on all aspects of Strangford Lough.