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ESCAPE

Monday, September 10, 2018 | METRO | 21

GO, JO

TRAVEL // CULTURE // ADVENTURE

Lumley on her new favourite city

TRAVEL SECTION OF THE YEAR

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FANCY A STUDY BREAK?

IF THE BACK-TO-SCHOOL VIBES HAVE YOU YEARNING FOR SOME LEARNING, YOU CAN NOW CONTRIBUTE TO VITAL STUDIES BY TAKING A ‘CITIZEN SCIENCE’ TRIP, SAYS RICHARD MELLOR

DIVE THE BELIZE BARRIER REEF

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22 | METRO | Monday, September 10, 2018

TRAVEL // CULTURE // ADVENTURE

DO YOUR BIT

The term ‘citizen science’ first appeared in the Oxford English Dictionary in 2014 and is defined as the public contributing to scientific discovery in the natural world

A CONSERVATION STAYCATION IN DORSET MEADOWS

Bulky bison and endangered lynx are important but don’t forget the little guys. Based in a barn conversion in Dorset’s wildflower meadows, these new w five-night breaks by Wild Days lend a s moths moths, helping hand to the likes of bats, otters and voles. Tasks include erecting electronic detectors to record bats, and placing overnight traps to capture data for the Mammal Society’s nationwide map. You’ll also spend an evening in a badger observation hide and be treated to hearty home-cooked fare in the pretty barn. From £875pp full board and transfers, wilddaysconservation.org

TRAMP AROUND TRANSYLVANIAN PEAKS WITH WOLVES

Field trip: Guests can lend a helping hand to the likes of bats, moths, otters and voles on a Dorset Wild Days break

With less than two per cent of Europe’s surface area still in its original state, it’s no wonder that wilderness – and wildlife – is disappearing at an alarming rate. That trend is being reversed in a hunting-free zone of Romania’s picturesque Carpathian Mountains, however, where beaver and bison have been reintroduced to accompany brown bear, wolf and lynx – these beasts are elusive but bison sightings are more likely. Volunteers on Biosphere

Expeditions’s small-group trips can help conducct conservation-focused research into these speciees’ existence, learning to track them through forestts, as well as placing and checking camera traps. The eventual e aim is to establish one of Europe’s biggest national parks – and it’s badly needed. From £1,651pp including full-board accommodation and transfers, biosphere-expeditions.org

Rare sightings: You can help wildlife research in Romania

Pick a citizen science adventure OCEAN-BASED OBSERVATION IN THE MYSTERIOUS AZORES Cetaceans are the chief focus of Wildlife Worldwide’s new conservation tours in the Azores, the otherworldly Portuguese islands in the mid-Atlantic. Aboard a catamaran, volunteers on the five-night trip will assist cetacean biologist Dr Lisa Steiner with ongoing studies into clever sperm whales and charismatic bottlenose dolphins. Tasks will span recording sighting details, analysing calls and observing behavioural

traits. ‘We approach to within 50 metres of the whales,’ she reveals, ‘but the dolphins often disrespect this rule and come over to bow-ride!’ On the two days off there’s an opportunity to try to dive with elusive blue whales – Earth’s biggest animal – and perhaps see them fluke. From £1,525pp including flights, transfers and most meals, wildlifeworldwide.com

.Branch out:. .Assist tree. .kangaroos in. .their plight.

MEET TREE KANGAROOS IN AUSTRALIA

Under threat due to hunting and habitat destruction, tree kangaroos live in Papua New Guinea and the Tablelands rainforests of Queensland, Australia. Newly available, and starting from Cairns, is a behind-the-scenes day with the species’ pre-eminent expert, Justin McMahon. You’ll catalogue sightings from camera traps and analyse scratch marks, as well as visiting a rescue centre and taking a night safari. The odds of a wild sighting? A happily high 90 per cent. Witnessing their physical attributes, says guide James Boettcher, is fascinating. ‘They look like they don’t belong in trees,’ he says. Those awkward ’roos are just one species citizen scientists can assist via Australian Wildlife Journeys; others include wombats and koalas. From £169 for the day, australianwildlifejourneys.com

Metro, UK, September 2018  

Short mention of Romania expedition within a large citizen science piece

Metro, UK, September 2018  

Short mention of Romania expedition within a large citizen science piece

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