Join in the hunt for nurdles

From nurdle hunting to identifying twigs and branches, there's so many ways to protect and appreciate nature during family walks

Nurdle hunting can be a fun activity for young and old when you are walking in coastal areas.

By getting outside hunting for nurdles and recording where they are, you can make a valuable contribution towards combatting plastic pollution and highlight the risks posed to wildlife.

A nurdle is a small plastic pellet about the size of a lentil and can be any colour.
Nearly all plastic products we use in our daily lives start off as a simple lentil sized nurdle.

Billions of nurdles are used each year for manufacturing plastic products.
These small nurdles are easily spilled during handling, and if not cleaned up can end up washing down drains, into rivers and eventually into the sea.
When these nurdles are at sea or on seashores, wildlife occasionally eat them mistaking them for food which damages their health.

It's a big problem; on one occasion schoolchildren taking part in a charity event collected 330,000 nurdles from Ferrycraigs Beach in North Queensferry.

There are three simple steps to taking part, go to a beach, look for nurdles and, most importantly, record your finding online. 

For more information on nurdles and how to take part in the Great Nurdle Hunt please visit https://www.nurdlehunt.org.uk/ .

Here are some interesting articles if you're looking for more information about nurdles: 

New scientist
The Scotsman
 

Getting twiggy with it!

If you're not near the coast, head out to your local woodland or forest and find out how much there is to learn about twigs and sticks.

We love these resources from our friends at the Woodland Trust as part of the Nature Detectives series. 

With the help of these fantastic worksheets, you'll be able to tell the difference between a birch and blackthorn and distinguish between a rowan and field maple.

George Anderson from the Woodland Trust in Scotland said

It can be a bit tricky to identify trees without leaves, but our easy to use twig ID sheet will help - for children and adults. Use it to take a closer look at the trees near you this winter.

If you're looking for something more festive for the Christmas school holidays, use the scavenger hunt resources and try to spot robins, ivy and even mistletoe.