In the past year, volunteers have contributed nearly 4500 hours of service to East Devon District Council’s Countryside team, Wild East Devon.

From conservation, path maintenance, wildlife surveying to greeting visitors at nature reserves, there’s a whole host of opportunities on offer. The team welcome new volunteers – try it out to enjoy a rewarding experience and a chance to help others appreciate our outstanding countryside.

If you enjoy meeting people and care about nature, join the team at the Discovery Hut at Seaton Wetlands, where you can enthuse visitors about the local wildlife, help them to get the most out of their visit and serve refreshments.

Lesley volunteers with her husband Pete at the Discovery Hut, talking to the public about the wildlife they have seen, helping visitors navigate the site and serving teas, coffees and light refreshments to visitors. She explained:

Pete and I love helping out because we enjoy meeting people and talking to them about the Wetlands. We tell people what to look out for and any exciting news. For example, we currently have a kestrel camera showing their nest with 4 chicks! To volunteer, people don’t need to be an expert in any field – having an appreciation of the natural world and enjoying talking to people is all you need.

At the moment, we volunteer every Monday morning but it doesn’t have to be the same every week. You can just give whatever time suits you. We’re both bird watchers and we like to encourage young people to take an interest in our environment.  Not only is being close to nature good for our health and wellbeing, but we can be good for it too.

Cllr Geoff Jung, East Devon District Council’s Portfolio holder for Coast, Country and Environment, said:

A massive thank you to all our volunteers. They help us achieve great things, offering their knowledge, time and enthusiasm to make our nature reserves such special places to visit.

To find out more about the work of the Countryside team and volunteering opportunities visit wildeastdevon.co.uk. The team can be contacted via email: wild@eastdevon.gov.uk or phone: 01395 517557.