Nottingham Green Guardians

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30/07/23

World Ranger Day 2023

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World Ranger Day

World Ranger Day is celebrated around the world on the 31st July each year. This day is used to honour the dedication, and crucial work rangers do every day around the globe.

Here at the Nottingham Green Guardians, we have two amazing Park Rangers, Simon and Danni and if you have been to a volunteer session or attended a family event in a park then you will have likely already met them.

They not only provide our volunteers with tea and biscuits but also give masses of advice, guidance and support on how we can make Nottingham greener, healthier and happier.

We’d like to show our appreciation to Simon and Danni

Big shout out to the remaining Nottingham City Rangers, Danni and Simon.  Both consistently go above and beyond to help deliver high quality events and activities throughout the City.  They also play an integral role in supporting ongoing conservation and volunteer work and without them, the City would be a quieter, less green and vibrant place to live.” Martin, Senior GDO

Did you know that Simon has been a Park Ranger for over 15 years? During this time he has worked across almost every park, nature reserves and green spaces space in the City. He has a lot of experience helping young people to connect with nature and has a passion for improving the city for butterflies.

Danni has been a Park Ranger with us for almost two years now, and has thrown herself into working with volunteers, community groups and schools across the city. Predominantly based across two of our high profile sites, the Forest Recreation Ground and Highfields Park. Danni continues to show her resourcefulness and works with materials on hand to find ingenious ways to make the most basic things fun for everyone from bug hunts to making fantastic compost for the increasingly popular community garden.

I’d like to thank our rangers for all the work they do on our parks and nature reserves, without them we wouldn’t be so connected to our local communities. Our rangers put in hundreds of hours a month volunteering with Nottingham’s fellow nature lovers and encouraging people to care for the environment and its wildlife. They are a wealth of knowledge and we are lucky to have them!” Sophia, Green Space Development Officer

The Park Rangers run a series of free* family friendly events throughout school holidays, including the upcoming Big Butterfly Count, Mini Explorers, Wildlife Walks and Story Parks.

*free but limited spaces so please book via Eventbrite

#WorldRangerDay

Simon, Park Ranger with Sellers Wood volunteers

Simon, Park Ranger with volunteers from Sellers Wood Nature Reserve

Mini interview with our Park Rangers;

What is your favourite thing about being a Park Ranger?

Simon: Simply being outside.

Danni: The variety, no two days are ever the same, so it’s never boring.

Can you tell us about your last “wildlife wow” moment in Nottingham?

S: It was only the other week, I was at Quarry Holes and thought I saw a very large Comma butterfly, until it settled very briefly on a large rock when I noticed it was a fritillary butterfly. I think it was dark green fritillary (Speyeria aglaja) [https://butterfly-conservation.org/butterflies/dark-green-fritillary], however I haven’t confirmed this yet.

D: I spotted a pink cricket in the pumpkin patch at the community garden at the Forest Recreation Ground. I found out later that it was a mutation, but it was pretty cool to see.

Do you have a favourite nature reserve or wildlife site in Nottingham and if so, why?

S: Currently Sellers Wood is my favourite. It’s got a nice variety of species, there are three types of orchid and the meadow is lovely at the moment. The woods generally are also very diverse.

D: That’s a hard question as there are loads of great sites, I am a bit of a ‘woodland gal’, so I do like Sellers Wood but I also really like Babbington Tip (also known as Stanton Pond and Pasture), it’s a representation of how wildlife can recover and take over. It’s an old colliery site but the regeneration and species variety there shows you the resilience of wildlife and how it can rejuvenate.

What is your biggest challenge as a Park Ranger?

S: I don’t really know. I suppose there are a lot of sites and lots to do on some of them, so keeping on top of all the work can be difficult.

D: I think the biggest challenge is wanting to manage everything but not having the time to, we have 54 wildlife sites and nature reserves across the city.

If you could give one piece of advice to readers on what they can do for wildlife, what would it be?

S: Enjoy it! You don’t have to know anything about nature, but you just should enjoy it for what it is.

D: I should say volunteer with the Nottingham Green Guardians but if you can then put a pond in your garden, it encourages insects, which then attracts frogs and birds. The vegetation will be very different to what is in a normal lawn which is great for biodiversity.

#WorldRangerDay

Simon and Danni, Park Rangers at Woodthorpe Grange Park

Simon and Danni  at Woodthorpe Grange Park (before getting distracted by a Common Darter dragonfly)

sandra.horner
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