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Habitats Observation & exploration

Eton Nature Walk

This walk explores the fields around Eton College, used for school games and other leisure activities by the school boys and the general public. The map shows a nature trail around South Meadow and The Brocas in Eton. This area offers rich and diverse habitats: woodland, grassland, riverside, urban. The map is numbered, representing 23 […]

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Habitats

How to spot a Badger sett

Badgers live in a network of tunnels called a sett; a family or social group of badgers is called a clan, and will have a territory with multiple setts surrounding it. The territory can be very large, and you may find signs of badger activity at a distance from tunnels and holes. Badgers tend to […]

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Adaptation Biodiversity Habitats

Badgers – Engineers of the Forest

‘“You really needn’t fret, Ratty” added the Badger placidly. “My passages run further than you think and I’ve bolt-holes to the edge of the wood in several directions, though I don’t care for everybody to know about them.’ (Kenneth Grahame, The Wind in the Willows)                                                           Those of us who read, or had read to […]

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Environment

Braywick Nature Reserve

Braywick Nature Reserve is an park in Maidenhead which combines woodland, wetland and grassland. It is managed to promote and protect a diverse array of wildlife. For a relatively small area there is an incredible amount to see, and the reserve demonstrates the positive impact on biodiversity of letting habitats grow and establish themselves. The […]

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Environment Observation & exploration

Bisham Woods

“No animal, according to the rules of animal-etiquette, is ever expected to anything strenuous, or heroic, or even moderately active during the off-season of winter.” Kenneth Grahame, The Wind in the Willows.                                                                                       Now that winter seems to be in retreat, and the first tentative signs of spring are here, the thought of life in […]

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Adaptation Food chains Habitats

Animals Education session

Explore habitats, adaptations and food chains with downloadable materials for use in the classroom or at home, featuring items from the Eton College Natural History Museum. Resource pack: Animals at Eton College Powerpoint presentation Animals at Eton College Collections – Student worksheet Animals at Eton College Collections – Teacher/educator guide More digital learning resources from the Collections can […]

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Activity Adaptation Food chains Habitats

Creatures of the Wild Wood family learning session

Habitats, adaptations and food chains are covered in this free educational session on Creatures of the Wild Wood, from George Fussey, Curator of the Eton Natural History Museum. Recorded in the museum, Mr Fussey looks at adaptations of woodland creatures, including the well-known Badger but also the lesser-known woodland parrot from New Zealand, the Kakapo! […]

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Environment

Windsor Great Park

Windsor Great Park is a Royal Park looked after by the Crown Estate. In the past the Great Park was used for hunting by the Royal families. There are lots of famous landmarks in Windsor Great Park such as: The Copper Horse – a statue of King George III at the top of Snow Hill. […]

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Environment

Burnham Beeches

Burnham Beeches is a nature conservation area of woodland and pasture. Run by the City of London, special sites for wildlife and species to look out for are listed on their website. There are a number of trails to help you explore Burnham Beeches such as the Historical Trail which gives information on the woodland […]

Categories
Natural world, natural history

Classification

Living things can be grouped in a variety of ways. Classifications organise the variety of living things by features and characteristics.   Animals are divided into two main groups. Animals that have a backbone are called vertebrates. Animals that don’t have a backbone are called invertebrates. These are then divided into smaller groups: vertebrates include mammals, birds, amphibians and fish. Invertebrates include insects and worms. […]

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Habitats

The Animals of Farthing Wood

The Animals of Farthing Wood is a series of books, and later a TV series, created by Colin Dann. It is a story about a group of animals who are forced to leave their homes after humans started destroying the wood in order to build houses. In the story, a toad is captured by people […]

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Ecosystem

Ecological succession

Ecosystems are constantly changing in response to natural and human disturbances.  As an ecosystem changes, older inhabitants gradually die out and new organisms move in, causing further changes in the community.  This series of largely predictable changes that occur in a community over time is called ecological succession.  Ecological succession is slow and gradual and can take many years.    As ecological succession occurs, types of […]

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Adaptation

The song thrush, the snail, and polymorphism

The Song Thrush, Turdus ericetorum, eats a variety of prey but the clear favourite is the Brown-lipped Snail, Cepaea nemoralis. The shell colour and patterning of the snail is highly variable; it may be brown, pink or yellow and either unbanded or with up to 1-5 dark brown bands. In the early 1950s, scientists from Oxford investigated the relationship between the thrush and the colours of the snails they ate. The bird opens snails by smashing the shell against a hard object (often a […]

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Adaptation

Adaptations: The Mandarin Duck

The Mandarin Duck was originally from the Far East. Whether by accident or on purpose, Mandarin Ducks were released into the wild in the UK in the 20th century. The ducks would have been in private collections, but once they were in the wild it is harder to control population. There are now thousands in […]

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Observation & exploration

Track

How do you find an animal, if you can’t see the creature itself?   You need to know when and where to look!  Knowing an animal’s habitat and behaviour patterns will mean you’ll be more likely to spot it.  For example, some animals such as badgers are nocturnal, which means they are most active at night. They are also much more likely to stay in […]