Royal Gazette: Children fall in love with nature
Children were given the opportunity to fall in love with nature on Valentine’s Day as part of an annual outdoor event organised by the Bermuda National Trust.
About 200 children, parents, grandparents and camp leaders gathered for the Children’s Nature Walk at Spittal Pond where they learnt about the reserve’s different habitats and cultural features from local experts.
Dr Dörte Horsfield of the BNT, who talked to the children about pond life, said: “This annual event is so important as it gets children outside for a couple of hours in a natural space which enhances their learning and their attention span, and connects them with nature so that they might become good stewards of the environment.”
Mahtorrie Wilkinson of Camp Pioneers described the event as “peaceful, very informative and eye opening,” highlighting the hands-on approach to learning. Children used magnifying glasses, binoculars and refractometers – instruments that measure fluid concentrations.
Spittal Pond, a 64-acre reserve, is Bermuda’s largest bird sanctuary and provides a diversity of habitats and variety of birds, especially during the migration seasons. It’s also a cultural heritage site with Portuguese Rock, the oldest evidence of humans on the island, and Jeffrey’s Cave, where an enslaved man was said to have hidden from his enslavers for several weeks.
Dr Alex Amat of the Bermuda Zoological Society talked about the different salt levels in the large and small ponds while Dr Miguel Mejias, and Erich and Janice Hetzel of the Bermuda Audubon Society, talked to children about birds helping them to observe them through scopes and binoculars.
Kim Dismont Robinson, director of the Department of Community and Cultural Affairs, told the story of Jeffrey’s Cave and Dr Charlotte Andrews talked about the significance of Portuguese Rock.
Dr Robbie Smith, curator of the Natural History Museum at the Bermuda Aquarium, Museum and Zoo explained the geology of the “checkerboard” rock formation and the natural forces that shaped the island.
Spittal Pond is owned by the BNT while the Government owns the surrounding parkland.
Anyone interested in learning more about Spittal Pond or taking part in private tours can do so by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org