Thursday, 9 June 2011

Welcome to our new CLARE Project Officer

ARC has teamed up with the London Wildlife Trust, Greenspace Information for Greater London (GiGL – the Capital’s Environmental Records Centre) and London Amphibian and Reptile Group (LARG) for an exciting new project. With support from the Heritage Lottery Fund we have set up Connecting London’s Amphibian and Reptile Environments or CLARE.

The aims of the project are:

  • to find out more about where London’s amphibians and reptiles can be found
  • to provide information that will help look after them into the future.
  • to ask people to look for these animals and to tell us where they have seen them
  • to provide an opportunity to see what they look like and to find out how best to look for them in the wild through open days at London Wildlife Trust centers
  • to produce an atlas of distribution based on records and on predictive mapping/ modeling
  • to provide specific training and advice to help staff and volunteers of the London Wildlife Trust, and London Amphibian & Reptile Group, to promote amphibian and reptile conservation, and especially on LWT Reserves and through LWT projects
  • to provide more opportunities for people to see just how fascinating these little animals are!

This new project has just started and will run for one yar. We would like to welcome Sophie our new CLARE Project Officer to the ARC team! Sophie studied Biology as an undergraduate at the University of Leeds and went on to gain a Masters in Biodiversity and Conservation. Her research into understudied and endangered frogs in the tropical forests of Belize is what really sparked her keen interested in amphibians and reptiles. Before joining ARC Sophie worked for Avon Wildlife Trust, motivating the public to take action for wildlife and assisting in efforts to guide wildlife conservation planning and policy. All of this invaluable experience will help Sophie to make the CLARE project a great success. She says;

“With the CLARE Project, I want to achieve new heights in raising public awareness and understanding of herpetofauna in the London region. I look forward to the busy year ahead; collecting data, creating new habitats and inspiring the public to take action for amphibians and reptiles, ultimately contributing to their conservation for years to come.”

We will continue to keep you up-dated on how Sophie gets on and we wish her all the best in her new job!

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