Wonderful moorland habitat

Forms 2 and 3 have been out on a trip with Tanya Eyre, from the Fylingdales Moor Environmental Stewardship Scheme, to look at the wonderful moorland habitat which we are so lucky to have on our doorstep.

We were lucky enough to be hosted by Caroline and Andrew Butterfield, Amelia’s parents, at Grouse Hill Caravan Park, so we were able to get straight onto the moorland nature trail behind the park, into a beautiful valley known locally as ‘Paradise Valley’. We were lucky enough to enjoy fabulous weather as we followed the trail and learnt all about the moorland wildlife from Tanya. On the way round we saw meadow pipits, a skylark and a buzzard soaring on the thermals. We also saw Brimstone and Green Hairstreak butterflies, and closer to the ground, we found  Tiger Beetles and Heather Beetles, and in the beck, a dragonfly larva. The children really enjoyed an activity which involved sitting quietly for five minutes just listening, then recording the sounds which they heard. They also worked in groups to go on a scavenger hunt, with the brief to find something smelly, something soft, and something living. We only glimpsed the Common Lizard as it disappeared into the grass, but we did manage to find a beautiful slow worm, which also proved to be very patient as it let everyone hold it and posed for numerous photos! On our way back, we had to make an adventurous crossing of the beck which Bear Grylls would have been proud of! The trail through the wonderful moorland habitat was enjoyed by all. We learnt a lot, so thank you to Tanya for being such a knowledgeable guide.

On our return to the caravan park, Mr and Mrs Butterfield kindly laid on squash, delicious home baked cakes and ice creams, which were thoroughly enjoyed by children and staff. The children also enjoyed the chance to play on the Grouse Hill woodland play area, so we would like to say a huge thank you to Caroline and Andrew for their hospitality, which really was the icing on the cake!

Karen Richardson, Junior School Teacher