The Berkshire Mammal Group is going into hibernation
We regret to say that due to other commitments of the commitee members, the Berkshire Mammal group will be reducing in scope from now.
We will no longer be activiely seeking members, charging membership or running talks.
Our thanks go to all our commitee members and members who have participated in our programmes over the years.
Our survey work will continue and the Surveys.email@example.com and Dormouse.firstname.lastname@example.org will remain active for general survey or dormouse related issues. For any other queries, contact me on email@example.com
A message from our Chair
Happy new year. I hope you had a good festive period!
I am writing to you to inform you about the changes that will be occurring in the Berkshire Mammal Group. I will be stepping down as chair at the Feb AGM this year. Unfortunately with my new position at the University of Surrey, it has become difficult to provide the time to the group that is needed. Ewan Davies is looking to step back from the VC role (but continue as website manager) and Angela Houghton is looking to step back from the treasurer role (but remain on the committee) at the Feb AGM.
While there are 5 committee members none are able to take on the chair role. Therefore in order for the group to continue in its current form the chair, VC and treasurer roles need to be filled as well as the group secretary which still remains vacant. If any of these roles are of interest to you please contact me. Even if you have not had any experience in any of these roles before, the group are very friendly and would be happy to help and support anyone wishing to join the committee. If you know of anyone who is not a member but may be interested please feel free to pass on this email.
If the chair and other roles can not be filled by the AGM in Feb the group is likely to be disbanded after the bat walk in April and the membership money will be donated to the Mammal Group. There will still be the opportunity to help out on surveys throughout the summer months of 2023.
Otter and fox on camera trap
Here at the Bershire Mammal Group we are always happy to hear about wildife in Berkshire, praticularly mammals.
So fi you have any photos or video please send them to us and we'll be happy to feature them, both here an on our social media.
Here's a short video clip sent to us recently from one of our members (Cathy Holwill).
The Mammal Society have announced that they are conducting a nationwide otter survey across the UK this year, similarly to the harvest mouse nest survey they did last year. The Mammal Society has divided the UK into 10km squares and asked volunteers to visit selected watercourses within these squares to check for presence of otters, mink or beaver. I’ve selected two squares to survey on behalf on the Berkshire Mammal Group. One is located in the Newbury area and one in Bracknell area. Newbury will probably involve surveys in and around the Kennet and Avon canal, and Bracknell will be the Blackwater River around Sandhurst. Each site needs to be visited 10 times between now and January 2023, unless positive ID is found before the 10 surveys have been completed. If you are interested in being involved in any of these surveys then please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org for more details.
Our 2022/2023 Winter talks program begins with:
Due to the cancellation of our October talk, our 2022/2023 Winter talks program begins with:
Wednesday 7th Decmber: Is there suitable habitat for wolves in Scotland? by Vashti Gwynn
"I'll be discussing the habitat suitability modelling I've done to assess whether the most important wolf habitat variables reach the threshold of suitability in mainland Scotland. I'll also explain why research like this is important, the ecological benefits of apex predators, and the important considerations around wolf reintroduction. And of course, I'll present some of my conclusions about where and how much of Scotland may be suitable, and what that might mean."
Otter in the Kennet and Avon at Newbury
Video from local resident Nicole Brooks.
This footage was taken n a summer evening in Newbury.
Nicole said: “Our neighbour was out fishing and saw it so we all stood and watched and waited and we were rewarded for our patience! Both my neighbor and my partner have seen an otter in the same area a couple of years ago.”
It’s great to see these animals in Berkshire and remarkable that they are so close to the town.
We’d love to feature any video or pictures you take of interesting mammals or mamal behaviour. If you see something please email me at email@example.com
Dormouse talk April 2021
Hazel dormice populations and torpor in the UK
For the first time we are pleased to have permission to share our online talk via our website.
A big thank you to Ellie Scopes & Charlotte Armitage for allowing us to do so.
These two talks discussed firstly conservation monitoring and popluation changes in dormice, and secondly the nature of torpor and the conditions under which dormice may enter this state
Beale Park Dormouse Collaboration
We are working closely with Beale Park to create and monitor safe palces for Hazel dormice. These vulnerable rodents are known to be in the area and we already survey in nearby Basildon park.
50 nest boxes are being installed which will provide extra places to nest in summer and hopefully help increase the population locally.
Our most recent online talk was also on the subject of Hazel dormice. You can veiw this here.
Beale Wildlife Park – Dormice in the wider estate
Surveys Paused During COVID Restrictions
Unfortunately due to government restrictions all of our outdoor events are currently postponed, including our NDMP dormouse box checks. We will provide updates as and when the situation changes.
Our winter program of indoor events has moved online. See our events page for the full schedule. Next up on Thursday 1 April 7.15pm Hazel dormice: populations and torpor in the UK. A talk by Ellie Scopes & Charlotte Armitage