Nature Watch Corfe Mullen

I think I told you some time ago that I was working on a new project… well this is it “Nature Watch Corfe Mullen”. So what is it?

A couple of years ago I emailed the Dorset Environmental Records Centre (DERC) in Dorchester to see what flora and fauna records they held for my parish of Corfe Mullen. When I got the list back I thought it was a joke. There were hardly any records. Why? I just couldn’t understand it.

Corfe Mullen is surrounded by rare lowland heaths, the beautiful River Stour valley and wildlife rich lowland meadows. I knew that the wildlife was out there. It just needed to be found and recorded.

So the idea of a community led “nature watch” was born. With over 10,000 people living in Corfe Mullen surely there were some who would help me record the wildlife, and help to increase the DERC records.

I needed to make it fun, easy and informative. That way everyone in the village could get involved, from 7 year old kids to 80 year old grandfathers. Most people have internet nowadays, so the website was my starting point.

I bought the domain name www.naturewatched.org and the pages for the Nature Watch Corfe Mullen site started to take shape; downloadable recording forms, reference material, news, local wildlife photographs and videos… even my garden webcam. Even Dorset Wildlife Trust agreed to get involved, by running four wildlife events in the village over the summer.

Last week I made the website (home page pictured above) live. This week I shall be sending a press release to the papers. Next week I will start to design a poster which can be stuck up around the village.

I’ve already been sent the first records, and received an interesting photograph of a bumblebee for identification today. I can tell that this project is really going to increase my own knowledge of wildlife. I will let you know how I get on.

Wish me luck… I need it!

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20 thoughts on “Nature Watch Corfe Mullen

  1. Brilliant! I love projects like this, which draw communities together and raise the profile of wildlife at the same time. Good luck with it!
    Kate

  2. I’ve just had a wee look Jane.
    Very professionally done I think.
    All the best for the project – I sincerely hope that it takes off and becomes all that you want it to be.
    Really nice to see your enthusiasm and inspirational work.
    Doug.

  3. Dragonstar. Recording the wildlife is my main aim. Lets hope it catches the imagination of others as well. I wish you were here too! I could do with some moral support…. and a “watching” partner!

  4. Kate. Thanks for your support. I hope it works… getting wobbly about it at the moment, but I’m sure it will be ok. If I don’t get the support from locals I will just have to run around doing all the recording myself. Ho hum!

  5. The Black Rabbit. Thanks for your support Doug. I’ve got lots of enthusiasm… let’s hope it does rub off on others. I’ve already received some records though… so that’s a start.

  6. Hi there Jane, sorry I haven’t been visiting in a while. I am so glad I didn’t miss this. Well done you! I am most impressed.

    Once you get local press aware of your project and perhaps schools too it should really kick off. As you know I have involved my local press with sightings in my gardenwatch blog and I do get lots of visitors through that. These visitors don’t usually leave comments but email me instead. I love to hear from people and I am sure you will too 😀

    As it is current, birds nesting especially in nestboxes are bringing in the most emails at the moment – hence I’ve not as much time to browse other blogs or websites. Perhaps you should consider getting help in answering emails. Watch out for spam too and supposed business offers!!

    Jane, this is an exciting project and can imagine both your excitement and perhaps nervousness with this. I am certain that with your enthusiasm and passion behind this Nature Watch project for your local area of Corfe Mullen it will be a great success 😀

    All the best!!

  7. Shirl. Thanks so much for your support. The press release has gone out to the papers, so hopefully I should get some coverage in the media soon. I’ve already heard about an adder basking in the sun on someone’s drive, and a very “pink” frog on a doorstep! I am nervous…. but I’m sure it will be fine. Thanks again. Take care. Jane

  8. Hi Jane,
    What a wonderful thing to do. Would you like me to do a review of your new site on my blog? I think it is a great thing that you are doing. I imagine that you willdiscover so much about the wildlife. I will know where to come if I want any wildlife identifying! Best of luck on your new venture.
    Best Wishes
    Sara from farmingfriends

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