Join like-minded people with an interest in field recording for a day of identifying and surveying in an informal environment. Naturalists of all levels (from beginner to expert) will be able to share their knowledge with peers and help each other improve knowledge and build confidence in biological recording.

Join us at Bishops Wood for a day setting pitfall traps in advance of our beetle Volunteer ID Day with Caroline Uff. We will be setting out multiple pitfall traps on site, to collect live specimens that will be identified during the Volunteer ID Day the following day.

Please note, this may be a shorter session than usual and I estimate we will finish for 1pm.

Pitfall trapping is a standard method used to survey ground-active invertebrates. It involves sinking a small container (usually cups for invertebrates) into the ground, ensuring that the top of the container is level with the soil surface. Any invertebrates moving across the ground can fall into the trap and, due to the smooth edges, they cannot escape unless you release them. Traps can be set as ‘dry traps’ to capture live invertebrates, or ‘wet traps’ to capture and kill invertebrates (for specimen collection). Pitfall traps can be let in-situ for varying lengths of time, depending on the survey aims, but they do require regular emptying. Samples obtained from pitfall traps require hand sorting to remove any invertebrate specimens for identification. 

All records collected will be added to iRecord in order to share our findings with the site managers, Local Environmental Record Centre and relevant national recording schemes and societies.

What will the day involve?

  • Practical experience setting pitfall traps (guidance will be provided)
  • A chance to meet fellow minded people from a range of different disciplines
  • Access to field equipment with support and guidance from a member of the FSC BioLinks project team

It’s free to join in, however, you must be at least 18 years of age and study space is limited so booking is essential.

You’ll have access to our tea and coffee making facilities but please bring your own lunch and any other refreshments you may require!

Please note that this event will involve individuals collecting, preserving and killing invertebrate specimens for identification purposes in order to assist us in generating a site species list.

Tutor: Rachel Davies

Rachel first became interested in invertebrates whilst working on a dragonfly reintroduction project in Cheshire. This included carrying out larval sampling, exuviae searches and adult transects. She later went on to work with mosquitoes for scientific research at the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine. Rachel currently works for the FSC BioLinks project as the West Midlands Project Officer.

In her spare time, she is an active biological recorder with a fondness for moths.

Covid Measures

In order to keep our customers and staff safe we ask that anyone attending our centres:

  • wears a face covering when in shared indoor space (unless exempt).
  • maintains social distancing.
  • cleans their hands regularly.
  • takes a Covid-19 test before they arrive.

Example Timetable

  • Please arrive in time for the course to start promptly at 10:00 am.
  • Refreshments will be available from 9.45 am.
  • The Field Recorder Day will end approximately at 1:00 pm.

What's Included

  • Hot and Cold Drinks
  • Practical experience setting pitfall traps (guidance will be provided)
  • A chance to meet fellow minded people from a range of different disciplines
  • Access to field equipment with support and guidance from a member of the FSC BioLinks project team

Bursaries and Subsidies

FSC BioLinks

FSC BioLinks is an exciting project for FSC in the South East and West Midlands, bringing together existing volunteers with skills in biological recording and identification, and new volunteers.

This project provides subsidised training courses, learning opportunities and digital tools focussed on invertebrate identification for anyone involved or interested in biological recording, to build and strengthen the community.

Invertebrates provide us with many useful ecosystem services, like pollination and decomposition, which we cannot survive without but their numbers are declining. Few people know how to identify or record invertebrates meaning there is a lack of data.

We are delighted to have been awarded a grant of £1.23 million from the National Lottery Heritage Fund for this project.

Before You Attend

Getting to FSC Bishops Wood

FSC Bishops Wood, Crossway Green, Stourport-on-Severn DY13 9SE

  • From Kidderminster: (M5, A38, A449 southbound) On the M5 heading southbound coming off at junction 5, taking the third exit on the roundabout to get onto the A38. at the first roundabout take the third exit onto Kidderminster Road going straight over the next roundabout sticking to Kidderminster Road. At the second left turn to follow Doverdale Lane. Once you have come to a sign turning right onto the A449 take it until you get to the Mitre Oak pub on your left. Take the first exit on the roundabout onto Bishops Wood Lane, finally taking the first left on you will arrive at Bishops Wood Field Centre.
  • From Worcester: (M5, A449 northbound) On the M5 heading northbound, take Junction 6 to Worcester/ Kidderminster taking the second exit heading for the A449 northbound, continuing for 9 miles. At the roundabout with the Mitre Oak pub take the first exit onto Stourport Road. Take the first left onto Bishops Wood Lane, finally taking the first left on you will arrive at Bishops Wood Field Centre.

What to bring

  • Notebook and pencil
  • Lunch
  • Suitable clothing for the wear (warm clothing, waterproofs) and suitable footwear (walking boots or wellies)
  • Any personal field equipment you have, such as a hand lens and pooter (equipment will be provided for those that need it).

Please note that this event will involve individuals collecting, preserving and killing invertebrate specimens for identification purposes in order to assist us in generating a site species list.

There will be a member of staff with first aid training and access to a first aid kit on site. If you have special medical requirements please let us know as soon as possible so we can plan the course.

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