07 June 2011>
If you are looking for a fun day out for all the family, head to Pontllanfraith on Saturday 11th June where people of all ages can enjoy a wild day out!
Go Wild! is a popular wildlife family fun day where visitors will get the chance to meet otters, hedgehogs, bats, owls, butterflies, moths, reptiles and amphibians, as well as discovering how much we rely on biodiversity to provide our own creature comforts in the home and outdoors.
With lots of hands on activities, ideas to explore our fabulous countryside and eco-tourism opportunities, this is an event not to be missed.
The fun starts at 11.00am at the Sir Harold Finch Memorial Park in Pontllanfraith (within the grounds of the CCBC council offices) near Blackwood.
The event is organised by Caerphilly county borough council and funded by the Valleys Regional Park Heart and Soul of Wales campaign.
This year, Go Wild is all about the natural environment and the services it provides us. We are lucky in the valleys of south Wales, you can see green hills from virtually every town and village, and 80% of Caerphilly county borough is classed as open countryside. In our natural environment, all living things (otherwise known as "biodiversity") are intricately linked and interact together to make our planet habitable.
So, why does biodiversity matter to us?
Albert Einstein estimated humans would have only 4 years to live if bees were lost from the planet.
Biodiversity matters because it provides us with the very things we need to survive. It matters in the home, giving us food, water, wood, fibre, medicine and fuel. It also matters in the outdoors, improving our physical and mental well being by giving us attractive landscapes to look at, our cultural and historical identity, spirituality, inspiration and recreational opportunities. The natural environment regulates our climate, stores carbon, controls flooding, erosion and disease, forms soils and recycles nutrients. It is continually looking after us from "behind the scenes" and we need to understand and appreciate it in order to look after our planet for future generations to enjoy.
One of the most obvious examples of our reliance on biodiversity is pollination by bees. Around a third of the food we eat is estimated to be dependent on bee pollination and in providing this service bees literally contribute billions in cash to the world economy. In October 2010, the United Nations published a report in which they placed an economic value on insect pollination at £134 billion.
What can we do to look after biodiversity?
The Go Wild event this year will help to provide you with some of the answers. There will be organisations and groups on hand to provide you with advice and information about the measures you can take at home to conserve and enhance the natural environment, including beekeeping, recycling, composting, saving water, building bird boxes, creating ponds, buying locally made timber, saving energy, making your own fertiliser and encouraging 'natural predators' to your garden.
If you're visiting or new to the area there will also be information galore on exploring the countryside, including on foot, by bike, on horseback and on water, and eco-tourism opportunities such as wildlife watching expeditions.
There will also be locally produced refreshments on sale, including Hapi's ice cream and Penrhiw Farm burgers.
For more information about Go Wild, please call 01495 235450 or visit www.caerphilly.gov.uk/countryside
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