Are you a young person passionate about wildlife? Do you know the call of a Crested Tit or can you tell the difference between a golden eagle and a buzzard?
The Cairngorms National Park Authority and Speyside Wildlife are offering two young people (16-30) a place on a specialised LANTRA Accredited Nature Identification course to start them off on a career path in nature tourism or conservation.
The course runs for 12 months and includes five weekends spent in the field and classroom, plus a large amount of self-study to produce a detailed field notebook. It culminates in a final assessment on all aspects learned. By the end of the course participants should be able to identify the mammals and major birds in the Cairngorms National Park, know what species live in specific habitats and have an appreciation of what wildlife guiding entails.
A short-list of finalists will be chosen to come to an assessment weekend in October and spend the day with TV naturalist Nigel Marvin, where the two winning people will be selected. Nigel told us, “When picking a winner we shall be looking for that hard to define ‘vital spark’… the spark that comes when someone has something other than just knowledge, someone for whom wildlife ID is almost instinctive.”
The competition is open to anyone living in Scotland who is 16-30 years old. To enter, you need to compile a field diary over the spring/summer for a minimum of 8 weeks. We are looking to find out the hidden world on your doorstep; where; when; weather; seasonal changes; what can you see; magic moments and ‘firsts’. The diary of your ‘local patch’ can be in a format that suits you; for example, notebook, film or photography.
The closing date for the competition has now passed but keep posted on this page as the winners will be announced here soon!