On a Trees for Life Forest Discovery Week you will connect to the natural world by immersing yourself in the wild Highlands and learn skills such as:
- wildlife tracking
- plant and animal identification
- bird language
- wildlife watching
- mindfulness in nature
- and more
Learning these nature awareness skills helps us to see the world in a new way and can enrich our lives wherever we may live. During the course of this fun and eye-opening week participants will have time to really immerse themselves in nature as well as sharing the company of other nature enthusiasts!
You don’t need to be an expert or a naturalist, you just need to have the curiosity to learn, discover and connect to the natural world. There will also be free time so that you can relax, wander, explore and cultivate your own connection to nature at your own pace.
Tracking is an ancient skill that helps us to gain a deeper insight into the lives of wildlife. You will learn a range of tracking skills including how to identify and interpret tracks, feedings signs, bones, feathers and more. Tracking brings out the Sherlock Holmes in you and is great fun!
Dundreggan is a biodiversity hotspot and we will cover ways to identify a variety of plants and animals from recognising bird song to identifying trees – sometimes with your eyes closed! These are skills that you can use wherever you happen to live. Identification skills include tree, bird and plant ID.
Reading bird calls and behaviour is an aid to spotting predators and other wildlife, and can teach us much else besides! Bird language is another age-old skill that is closely related to tracking. By interpreting the different types of bird call and behaviour we can build a picture of what’s going on around us. It is even possible to locate owls and other predators purely by listening to other birds!
Humans have relied on plants for countless millennia. Discover how to recognise wild foods and to gather them in a safe and sustainable way. We will also look at other plants and fungi that have been used to make fire, string and more.
There is a wide range of wildlife in the area including red squirrels, pine martens, ospreys and more. While sightings obviously can’t be guaranteed there will be a chance to visit the pine marten hide and to look for other wildlife. You will also learn wildlife spotting tips and techniques.
Mindfulness and nature connection
Engaging our senses is an essential part of being a naturalist. We will explore ways to do this that help us to relax and become fully alert and present in our surroundings.
There are many proven benefits that come with connecting to nature both to physical and mental wellbeing. You will get to try out some tried and tested ways of feeling more at home in the natural world and rewild yourself!
- Solving mysteries in the wild
- Developing a deeper sense of place
- Nature awareness – observation and deduction skills
- Group mapping activities
- Camera trapping
- Developing curiosity as a naturalist tool
- Free time to relax and explore
Trees for Life Forest Discovery Weeks provide a unique chance for people to understand and connect to the natural world in a meaningful way. They are an opportunity for anyone with an interest in nature to immerse themselves in the wild Highlands and learn the skills such as tracking, foraging and identification. Learning these nature awareness skills helps us to see the wild world in a new way and can enrich our lives wherever we may live.
During the course of this fun and eye-opening week participants will have time to really immerse themselves in nature as well as sharing the company of like-minded nature enthusiasts!
There will also be free time so that you can relax, wander, explore and cultivate your own connection to nature at your own pace.
Accommodation is located in Dundreggan Lodge. The lodge is situated on the southern boundary of Dundreggan, overlooking the River Moriston. This comfortable and warm building has three bunkrooms, a well appointed kitchen, a large lounge/dining area, two en-suite shower rooms and two other shower/toilets. There is plenty of hot water for the end of a hard day’s work, and drying areas for wet clothes.
The Common Room has a large wood burner for cosy evenings in – and on clear evenings we can light the fire outside. You will also have access to our growing library and equipment such as camera traps, microscope, bat detectors, moth traps as well as our hide, where pine martens are regularly seen.
£550 per person.