u3a research database

Projects with topic Natural world

There are now 60 projects under the topic Natural world.

Click on ID for more information on a project.

77Learning package for retired people on sustainable development in collaboration with Unesco
91Glow worm survey by Burnham on Crouch Wildlife Group
93Conservation of the Shining Ramshorn Snail
99Ornithological project, Cheltenham
107Study of Farningham Woods, Kent
112Research on grotto & vanished 18thC water gardens at Lacock Abbey
113Research on grotto & vanished 18thC water gardens at Lacock Abbey
120Study of River Blackwater. Members travelled on foot and by boat, met local experts, visited areas of scientific importance and spoke to local people who work on the river and earn their living from it.
125Confirm site of walled garden & layout at Erdigg Hall and identify historical vegetables
146Restoration & maintenance of garden borders at Lawrence House museum, Launceston
174Travellers' Tales - exploring travel literature and why people travel
175Exploring natural history of London within 20-mile radius of St Paul's
177Restoration of green London
222Surveying plants & insects in Great Meadow, Waterworks Nature Reserve, Leyton, E.London
235To study plants, artefacts, historical data & botanists and create garden trails at Museum of Garden History, Lambeth
236Possible future project on contemporary garden design archive
269To improve the marketing & how assess how the Barnes Wetlands Centre can raise its profile
271Studies of birds, insects and plants in Eltham Palace gardens
320Researching gardens & winter plants at Belsay Hall, Northumberland
321Fauna & flora of gardens, Bath
368Source to Sea - story of east & west Okement Rivers, Devon
371Ecological monitoring & photography at Southwell Hall, Notts
377Celebrating the South Downs - lost villages, geology, bonfires, stained glass, paintings & photography
380Study of the Teign estuary
383Thames Riverside Project is a mix of walks of different lengths, focusing on industrial history, wildlife, the arts and photography
386Fishing trade between Teignmouth and Newfoundland 16-19th century
387Life & work of Devon naturalists
389Planting new garden for residents, Dunwhinny Lodge
3812 year project to research & map Berks & S.Oxon pathways, drove roads and toll roads
470Renovated nature garden
475Dorchester and Purbeck Natural History groups recorded the plants of the local parks and open spaces in the local area
311Study of the land around Shrewsbury inundated by recent floods and how it had been affected in the past
483Sully Remembers 1914-1918. Continuation of previous research into names on war memorial in Sully church, with input from children at the local primary school with a Design a Medal competition.
552The Perceptive Plant - plants or plant parts are often busy monitoring their environment, checking where they are, what time it is, where other plants are, smelling and seeing, often using mechanisms as sophisticated as those in us and other animals.
585Alnwick U3A's Geology group has made a major contribution to understanding of local geology through its research on the Northumberland coast. They have produced a book of 12 walks with maps, photographs and explanations of local rock formations.
591Five U3As known as CHaTTR U3As, in the Thames Valley network, have researched the River Thame, a tributary of the Thames. Many different groups looked at historic buildings, footpaths and walks, the flora and fauna and the geology while others produced photographs, paintings, poetry and a banner.
570A Buzz in the Meadows. - Identifying and monitoring the different bumblebees present on a day in the Yorkshire Dales
647Bats, A Unique Evolution. Bats have been around for over 50 million years. Currently there are over 1300 species, filling ecological niches on almost every continent. For centuries these ‘creatures of the night’ were rarely seen, often feared and barely understood. This talk aims to explain what's so special about the physiology and lifestyle of bats. With equipment able to render ultrasound audible to humans, awareness of their presence and how they live has grown. With the advent of DNA analysis, more and more species have been found. This talk will look at speciation as well as the three key characteristics that make them special: flight, echolocation and longevity.
651Meopham U3A Bee Watch group began in 2017. We walk, at monthly intervals, a set route of between 1 and 2 km and record the variety and quantity of any bumblebees that we see, taking note of the caste i.e. male, female, worker, or unknown, plus the vegetation & prevailing wind, weather & cloud conditions. Initially 5 routes were surveyed with 4 being recorded on the Bumblebee Conservation Trust website 'BeeWalk' online reporting scheme. In 2017 another site was at a local garden centre which provided an easily accessible area where less mobile members of the group could take part. We are grateful to the BumbleBee Conservation Trust for providing some initial identification training, but anyone interested can take part - the BBCT will help you with identification. During 2018, walks continued & we were able to revise some of our routes as experience grew. The 2019 season ended in October and reports and plans for 2020 are currently in preparation.
723Inviting submission of facts and ideas to inform about the Welshcoastline and celebrate it.
724Bexley Armchair Travellers group researches a country or area in advance of each meeting, sharing out the politics, language, landscape, etc between members.
726Bumblebee conservation - field study. Two separate transects have been registered against Canterbury U3A since 2017. Each transect is walked once a month between March and October and the species and number of Bumblebees recorded are lodged with the Bumblebee Conservation Trust. Material to assist identifying Bumblebee species is available.
735A research project to mark the 200th anniversary of the death of the great 18th century landscape designer, Humphry Repton
739Northampton U3A's Leathercraft Activity Group became volunteers on the National Leather Collection's project to help sort and catalogue 800-plus boxes of leather related objects, including fragments of the Dead Sea Scrolls and leather under garments.
740Croydon's wine tasting group is fortunate to have the National Subject Adviser as a member - they have researched Loire wines for the spring
748Spirits of Sussex - Sussex U3A Network (SUN) are working on a special Shared Learning Project during 2018 exploring Sussex ‘s rich tapestry of legends, mixing history with myth. The term ‘spirits’ can be widely interpreted and could include spiritual beliefs, ghostly spectres and brandy smuggling.
778The Botanical Institute is partnering the U3A in an SLP to discover more of its history and traditions. We will need participants to interview key botanists who have been involved in the Institute over many years and to capture untold stories about their passion for plants and experiences at the SLBI.
779Good things come in trees - recording the details of around 140 trees in the arboretum's ancient tree collection. They wanted an in depth look at the collections, measurements of specimens, with details of each, health profiles from VTA’s (visual tree assessments) and photographs.
782Mycology is Fun! We learn to identify some of the very many different species to be found rather than looking for fungi to pick and eat. The best way to begin to learn is to see them growing in their natural habitat and in all stages of development. It seems easier to learn this way than to look in a book or listen to a lecture.
810Life in the Arun Valley
881A group of volunteers from Bedale and District U3A took part in a Shared Learning Project with a local landmark – the Thorp Perrow Arboretum in North Yorkshire – recording the details of around 140 trees in their ancient tree collection.
935The University of Westminster is working in collaboration with the Chelsea Physic Garden, the oldest botanic garden in London. This project is about exploring people's experience of sensory descriptive tours, which may include touch, scent and even taste. The aim is to understand what makes for a successful and enjoyable tour.
943During the winter our environment group continued our biodiversity studies with a detailed investigation of lichens as indicators of environmental pollution. We were fortunate in one of our members, Peter Swire, being an enthusiastic and knowledgeable member of the British Lichen Society. Following a detailed look at the nature, characteristics and life cycle of lichens, species gathered in the field were first of all identified and then grouped according to their ability to tolerate sulphur dioxide pollution.
1011The project is to transcribe, research and encode the first of Kew Gardens' Register Books ( 1793-1809) in collaboration with the University of Roehampton and Kew Gardens
1026Long Eaton's Plant Study Group was unable to go on visits during lockdown so they studied their own gardens or on local walks and shared their findings by email or phone.
1027Cowbridge U3A Natural History Group invested in a trail comera to capture wildlife on film. During lockdown, members also shared wildlife observations from their solo walks.
1034An online research project, about an inclusive online tour of the Chelsea Physic Garden. With Covid-19 impacting on our ability to visit historic gardens in person, we wanted to explore ways to bring the Chelsea Physic Garden to people at home. We have created an inclusive video tour which introduces you to the delights that this unique heritage site has to offer. By taking part in the study, you will provide invaluable feedback to help us, and the Chelsea Physic Garden, understand how to develop engaging and inclusive online tours. Our objective is to develop ways for us all to access and enjoy our cultural heritage at home.
1051Ayr's tree-spotting group began as just that, a chance to get out and find real trees. We had started to venture further afield to interesting areas such as Galloway Forest Park and the Isle of Arran, when the pandemic arrived. Our members have been fortunate to avoid covid (touch wood!), but naturally we have had to adapt to the circumstances. For several months when even the smallest of outdoor gatherings was impossible, we held monthly themed zoom meetings. Members were encouraged to research a topic of the month, such as tree mythology, and give a short presentation of their findings. This certainly widened the scope of our discussions, and may well be something we repeat in future.
1052The Dulwich Tree Identification and Sketching group records leaves and fruits at different stages in the year and look at the trees in detail; the shapes and the bark and the flowers. One thing we’ve noticed looking at trees this way is that all trees are producing flowers, fruit and seeds – not just conventional fruit trees.