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Education News Letter
By Anya Wicikowski on April 5, 2018
14 Ambassadors attended Ambassadors Osprey Club on a cold often drizzly afternoon, along with family and friends.
All were sustained in the cold hide by Liz’s excellent Easter cupcakes, and chocolate Easter bunnies , a reward from Ken for completing the osprey quiz!
Sam recorded 31 different bird species including excellent views of a Barn Owl , hunting over the meadows, as well as the Manton Bay ospreys!
Also seen for some time were two water voles and two muntjac deer, right in front of Waderscape hide.
Looking at the Barn Owl behind the osprey nest!
Jackie talks to Osprey Ambassadors about the presentations they have made at their school.
How many times can you find the word “egg” in this report about our young Osprey Ambassadors event ?
It is Easter Sunday and we are all very eggcited as it our first Osprey Club for 2018!
We met at Lyndon and from the eggsit of the centre to the hide we had to find pictures of ospreys pegged to the fence posts along the track.
We had to write down the legg ring number for each osprey picture to win an Easter egg prize.
At Waderscrape hide, Maya and Osprey 33 were on the nest with two eggs in their nest and a third egg expected today… this is really eggciting news! We spent some time watching the ospreys and saw about 30 species other birds. No I am not eggsaggerating …. Sam made a list!
We had lovely views a barn owl over the meadows,and many different waterfowl, but no eggrets today.
As well as meeting the other Osprey Ambassadors we were given the latest presentation to show in our school with a script and some eggstra information about this year’s “Inspired by Ospreys” competition.
Soon it was four o’clock and we had to go, even though I begged to stay for a bit longer to watch the ospreys!
Still, I can always see what is happening at home using the Rutland Ospreys live web cam.
- How many “egg” words can you find?
- Can you list the “egg” words which have spelling mistakes, with their correct spelling? Try to get it eggsactly…I mean exactly…right!
Casterton Primary School have made a special ”Osprey Ambassador” school badge
Answer = 12 Easter “egg” words
Incorrect ones with corrections
By Anya Wicikowski on March 20, 2018
The latest news from our Education Team- Ken, Jackie and Pete
Balloons blowing about in sub-zero temperatures outside our Volunteers Training Centre may seem a little out of place on this freezing Sunday here in Rutland, but it can only mean one thing – the 2018 Osprey Ambassadors Warm-Up is about to start!
And ‘Warm-Up’ is an appropriate term today! Down in the Bay, a biting east wind is whipping the water up into angry white-crested waves reminiscent of the North Sea, and Maya and 33 are spending most of their time hunkered down in the nest, with just the occasional foray during a lull to try and secure a fish. The Osprey Ambassadors, aged between eight and sixteen, and representing fifteen local schools, are arriving with parents, grandparents and other family members, keen and enthusiastic as ever, and looking forward to receiving everything they will need in order to fulfill their vital role in keeping classmates and teachers fully informed of the Ospreys’ progress between now and their departure in September.
After the briefest of introductions, we are straight into the new season, demonstrating the content of the memory sticks which the ambassadors will be using in their schools. We also issue a script, but frankly some of the ambassadors are skilled and experienced in Osprey work now, and they will make their own commentary to accompany the photographs of Maya and 33. The memory stick is updated each month at our regular Osprey Club meetings – held on the first Sunday of each month down in Wader Scrape hide in Manton Bay. And the first Osprey Club is in just two weeks’ time, on April 1st, Easter Sunday! Will there be an Osprey egg in the nest by then? Well, judging by the enthusiasm of our two Ospreys at the moment, it’s quite possible! And of course, as it’s Easter, we will be organising some sort of Osprey-related fun activity for our ambassadors….and Mums and Dads too!
After collecting membership cards, newsletters, memory sticks and everything else from the table, it’s time for cake and drinks in the kitchen next door! Our own resident Mary Berry (aka our friend Liz) has once again excelled herself and after just a few minutes the table is literally bare! Carrot cake, krispy cakes, cup cakes, chocolate cookies – where did they all go? Thank you Liz – brilliant!
Finally it’s up the gallery overlooking Lagoon 4, where the binoculars and telescopes are soon all being skillfully used to spot and identify as many species as possible in the snowy and desolate scene before us. There are no Ospreys visible from here (although there is another nest platform awaiting an adventurous pair sometime soon we hope!), but these young birders are finding some good birds. Sam is compiling an impressive list, headed by the showy and spectacular drake Smew he has found, sheltering with its more sober red-headed female by the shore. A Pochard is another good find. The whole room is buzzing with the thrill of discovering and identifying all the birds – or are they all having a sugar-rush after all that cake?
All too soon it’s nearly 4.00 and time to go – but what a terrific afternoon it has been! We are always re-assured by these afternoons – the spirit, excitement, energy and enthusiasm of the young ambassadors, the huge support of the parents and families, the shared concern among us all that the Ospreys – and all the other creatures – should thrive here and everywhere else…….
It may be freezing outside, but here today there has been a warm, rosy glow! It’s going to be a good Osprey season! We’ll see you all very soon in your schools and at the next Osprey Club!
By Anya Wicikowski on March 16, 2018
Just a mile or so up the south shore of Rutland Water lies the village of Edith Weston, and at its heart is one of our very best Osprey schools. In fact we call it ‘Osprey School No. 1’, because it has always been our ‘go to’ school when we want to try something new! The first ever Skype links with our friends in Gambia were made here, the Ozzie stories were all read aloud here before going into print, and the first Osprey Ambassadors came from here. All the children who featured in ‘Be an Osprey Expert’ were pupils at Edith Weston at the time. We believe – and will continue to do so until someone proves us wrong – that Edith Weston is the only school in England, maybe the UK, maybe even the World ( well maybe not the World!), where the children can simply walk out of school in spring and summer and be watching Ospreys within a matter of minutes! No cars needed, no buses, no cycles even – just five minutes walk to the shore. And that is pretty special, don’t you think?
Today, on the last school day of WOW, we arrive bright and early as the children are arriving too. They know us all by name, and shout out their greetings. There are always new children too, who we haven’t met before, and they come from all over the UK and beyond – we will need to bring them up to speed too. And a surprise for us today! As we are setting up in the hall, mothers, dads, and tiny babies pass through on their way to a ‘Mums, Dads and Babies’ swimming event in the indoor pool next door! And guess what? One of the mums is none other than Louise Mackrill and son Harry (of Tim Mackrill fame), and another is our Anglian Water education colleague Joelle with baby Ivy! Amazing Osprey people everywhere!
We launch into our presentation, with pictures and video clips, latest news from the Bay and from Mauretania (where tracking data tells us 30(05) was – but now she’s in in Western Sahara!), with frequent stops to answer questions, tell stories, shout WOW! every few minutes, and generally celebrate the return of the famous Manton Bay pair! Along the way we make sure everyone understands the processes of breeding, ringing, tracking, migration and everything else the team works on during the season. And of course we have to end with the rousing Osprey Song which some of them have heard so often they know it off by heart!
There’s just time to meet our new Osprey Ambassadors for 2018, equip them with their instructions for Sunday’s ‘Ambassadors Warm-Up’ meeting, and finally we’re all ospreyed out and leave for a well-earned coffee just down the road at the Lyndon Reserve. The sun is shining, Maya and 33 are looking brilliant, visitors are piling through to see them. During the week we have met a total of 845 children and their teachers in their fantastic schools. We are, as always, so grateful to them for allowing us to come in and tell everyone the enthralling stories of the fabulous Rutland Ospreys. And we’ll carry on doing just that for the rest of the season!
By Anya Wicikowski on March 14, 2018
Ken’s WOW Blog
Well it’s Wednesday March 14th – Day 3 of World Osprey Week! And what a week it’s been so far! It was an early start for us today as were due at one of our flagship schools in Oakham – Brooke Priory!
Brooke Priory is probably the only school we have visited for each of the five World Osprey Weeks since we first started them in 2014. Today was a special assembly for them – we were treated to brilliant music by the school orchestra, then the school presented a cheque to a local charity which provides breakfasts for children and adults – and then it was our turn! We had prepared a brand new presentation, which as well as giving all the latest news about the Rutland Ospreys and Maya’s return, included a very important section about the dangers Ospreys (and other birds and mammals) face through waste plastics and other materials in the oceans. The students already have a group called ‘Planet Protectors’, and they were well tuned in to the message we were giving. Plastic drinking straws and other non-degradable packaging came in for particularly harsh treatment! Well done Brooke Priory! As the school orchestra played us out, there was a lot of really good discussion from the students about how we can help Ospreys and all other wildlife by taking a little care about our choices in shops!
A few minutes later and we are in the studios of Rutland Radio, and Jackie is whisked in front of the microphone where host Rob Persani quizzes her about WOW and the latest news about the returning Ospreys. Listen to Jackie this Friday morning on 107.2 and 97.4 FM!
Time for a breather! Back at Lyndon, Maya is thrilling a small crowd gathered in front of the screen – she looks very much at home on the nest, and is even bringing twigs in already! Everyone hopes her mate 33(11) is not too far behind! The Centre is already a hive of activity – volunteers Andy and Anne Strang are sorting out a large donation of bird and other natural history books which we will sell during the season, with all profits going to the Osprey Project! Many thanks to Andy and Anne– and please do not hesitate to donate any more of your unwanted natural history books to us!
After lunch we are off again – this time to Fernvale Primary School in Thurnby, near Leicester! This is a new school for us – we are anxious to spread the Osprey story more widely this year, including some more urban centres in towns and cities such as Leicester, Peterborough and Corby!
So if you are in any way connected with a school that hasn’t yet been ‘ospreyed’, please get in touch and we’ll be pleased to oblige!
By admin on January 22, 2018
2017 was not only a record year for the Rutland Ospreys (8 pairs raised 15 chicks to the free-flying stage) – it was also a record year for the Osprey Education Team! Between March and September we had 57 bookings for school and youth group visits, either in schools or here at the Lyndon Reserve, and we met well over 3,500 young people during the season! A lot of that success was down to our outstanding team of young Osprey Ambassadors, who attended the monthly meetings in the Wader Scrape hide in Manton Bay, and took all the news about Maya and her family back to their schools for us. This meant that teachers and students throughout Rutland were kept up to date – many schools organised their visits after hearing the exciting news from their Ambassadors!
Records are there to be broken…..so for 2018 we are hoping that the Ospreys of Rutland Water will enjoy even more success, and maybe the number of breeding pairs will reach double figures! That would be amazing!
We expect that many of our Ambassadors will stay on for another year, but some have moved on to new schools and may not wish to continue. So we will be looking for some new faces, as well as welcoming back old friends as well.
World Osprey Week – 12 to 18TH March 2018
The Ospreys will begin their long migration from West Africa back to Rutland in March, and World Osprey Week or WOW celebrates the return of the Rutland Ospreys. The website has the latest news about the migration of the Rutland Ospreys and some bird have satellite trackers, which means that we can monitor their progress north! It is a truly international event with migration “flyways” in Europe, West Asia, and the Americas.
Free school educational resources
It is possible for teachers to deliver lessons using Osprey based resources! Ideal for World Osprey Week!!!
Schools, home school groups and other educational groups can simply register and then download and use our FREE primary and secondary teaching resources. These include worksheets (with teacher’s notes), lesson plans, fun activities and project ideas that cover a wide range of national curriculum subjects. www.ospreys.org.uk/free-school-resources/
“Inspired by Ospreys” – our creative competition for 2018
This year we have an exciting “Inspired by Ospreys” competition for young people. There are three categories and these are; A drawing or painting (A4), a short story (no more than 600 words),or a poem (no more than one side A4) There are two age groups; 11 years and under and 12 years and over. Full details and dates are on Rutland Osprey website www.ospreys.org.uk .On the Education tab click on “2018 Competition Inspired by Ospreys”
Osprey Ambassadors are school pupils who are the link between the Osprey Project and their school. Take a look at the Ambassadors page on the Rutland Ospreys website for more information. Follow this link … www.ospreys.org.uk/osprey-ambassadors
World Osprey Week – Ambassadors Warm-up
All Osprey Ambassadors (with a supervising teacher or adult) are invited to a World Osprey Week “Warm-up” on Sunday 4th March 2-4pm, at the Volunteer Training Centre, Rutland Water. More information will be sent directly to ambassadors.
Ambassadors Osprey Club
This held on the first Sunday EACH MONTH from April – September 2018
This takes place at the Lyndon Nature Reserve, Rutland Water, in the Wader Scrape hide from 2-4pm
Contact Ken for any information about Ambassadors and Osprey Club firstname.lastname@example.org
We can visit your local school
The Education Team can visit local schools to give assemblies, or short presentations or educational activities. All the team are experienced teachers. More information about school visits is on our website at… www.ospreys.org.uk/visiting-your-school/
E-mail Ken for advice or to make a booking. email@example.com
Visiting Lyndon to see the Ospreys
Educational groups can visit Lyndon to see the Rutland Ospreys. The best months to visit are May to July. If you would like to visit the Lyndon Reserve with any educational group, take a look at what the Rutland Osprey Education Team can offer at www.ospreys.org.uk/school-visit-information-video
It would be worth planning ahead to book your visit for 2018! Please offer us a choice of dates for you visit giving as much notice as possible.
E-mail Ken for visit advice or visit bookings at firstname.lastname@example.org
HOT OFF THE PRESS – OSPREY PUBLICATIONS
Three osprey books for young people written by Ken Davies, feature the adventures and migrations of Ozzie the Osprey. All have been reprinted and are now available for sale at our Visitor Centres and in local bookshops in Oakham, Oundle and Peterborough. See www.ospreys.org.uk/childrens-books for full details. A special signed, updated, numbered, hardback limited edition of Ozzie Leads The Way is due in March 2018. Ken is currently writing a new story about wintering Ospreys in Senegal and the people who study them.
Jackie, Pete and Ken, Osprey Education Team
Posted in Education News Letter