London Gatwick Airport will host a week-long wildlife initiative, running from May 29 to June 5, 2017, that aims to bring staff, passengers and nearby residents closer to nature.
The ‘Gatwick Goes Wild’ project has been organized in partnership with the Gatwick Greenspace Partnership, one of the Sussex Wildlife Trust’s Living Landscape projects, and offers a program of events to explore the wild spaces and nature found on the airport’s doorstep.
Planned events include a walk along the River Mole to learn about the plants and animals living in and alongside it, as well as an evening stroll to enjoy the fascinating sight of bat colonies emerging at sunset. Gatwick will also host a ‘Mammal Mayhem’ session, offering an opportunity to meet some of the small mammals living nearby, such as harvest mice and bank voles.
A similar week of wildlife events was organized for Gatwick staff in June last year, and its popularity inspired the airport to include members of the public in this year’s event.
Rachel Bicker, biodiversity consultant at Gatwick Airport, said, “With many species declining across the country, there’s never been a more important time to get out there and engage with wildlife, and from grass snakes to rare long-horned bees, there’s lots of intriguing wildlife to be discovered at Gatwick.
“The airport invests significant resources into protecting and maintaining its environment, and we’re keen to give our local community an insight into how we look after the range of species living on the doorstep of one of Europe’s busiest airports. I, for one, can’t wait for this exciting week of wild days out exploring Gatwick’s captivating nature sites.”