New for 2015 - OPAL citizen science surveys

29th January 2015
Castlemilk Park has a rich diversity of flora and fauna; this year you have lots of opportunities to take part in OPAL citizen science surveys within the park. These free events are run with the help of the Glasgow Science Centre and are a great way to discover wildlife right on your doorstep. These events include:-

Pond dipping: the water survey
Join us to find out what creatures of the deep we discover under the surface of the pond? Learn how to test for water quality using simple observations in our water health survey. And find out whether the pond in Castlemilk Woodlands is a healthy system or in need of some care.

Finding our “Most Wanted”: the bugs count
We will learn to identify the variety of invertebrates in the Castlemilk Woodlands and keeping a special eye out for our six “Most Wanted” species as we go. Help OPAL to discover where our minibeasts are by taking part in our Bugs Count Survey, and learn what makes the Two-spot Ladybird an important species for the UK environment.

Grey Heron, Castlemilk Pond

Rich soils and wriggling worms: the soil survey
Find out what goes on under your feet as we dig down into the dirt for our OPAL Soil Survey. Soil is a complex world which we know very little about which is why we need your help! Take part in the Survey today to smell, feel and test your way to find out what’s in our mud, and learn to identify some of the 27 different earthworms that live in the UK.

Life in the hedge: the biodiversity survey
Biodiversity describes the variety of life! We will concentrate on hedges and learn about how this rich habitat provides food and homes for wildlife. Learn to ID common British invertebrates and help OPAL to emphasise the environmental importance of the humble hedge as we complete the OPAL biodiversity survey.

Woods of Castlemilk Park

Track the epidemic: the tree health survey
The UK’s tree’s need your help! Diseases like Ash Dieback are killing our trees and giving us a lot to worry about. We simply don’t have enough scientists to keep track of this epidemic and so we need your help! Learn about some of Britain’s most deadly tree diseases, some of which have made it to the UK and others that are yet to arrive, and learn how to monitor tree health in your area.

Sensitive lichens: the air quality survey
How murky is the air we breathe? Let OPAL teach you how to monitor the air quality in your area by looking at what lichens are growing on trees nearby. We will take a walk to look for our nine different air-indicator species and carry out an air survey, and find out how clean, or otherwise, is the air we are breathe.

To book your place on one of the OPAL surveys in Castlemilk Park please contact us. For full details please visit our events section.

OPAL citizen science: environmental surveys
The Open Air Laboratories is an environmental charity, based at the Glasgow Science Centre with Glasgow City of Science, helping to get people out and about and caring for the natural environment. We work with scientists who are looking for help collecting information about the health of the UK environment. Over this series of events OPAL will introduce you to our six environmental surveys and show you how you can be part of a nationwide science project. From monitoring air quality to tracking deadly tree diseases, we will teach you how to make simple observations that could make all the difference to your local environment.

For more information on OPAL surveys contact:

Joanne Dempster: OPAL Community Scientist
Telephone: 0141 420 5010 (ext 270)
Address: Open Air Laboratories
Glasgow Science Centre
50 Pacific Quay
G51 1EA