Volunteer Spotlight: Poppy Bye

Blog post by Poppy Bye on 12 Mar, 2024
I am a student at the University of East Anglia studying Ecology and Conservation, currently in my third year. I also volunteer at a hedgehog rescue center in Norfolk, where I have been looking after sick and injured hedgehogs and helping to raise awareness for them since 2019. It’s where I developed my love for hedgehogs, which has led me to doing my dissertation research project about their populations across Norfolk as well as trying to find out what their favourite food is!

Poppy holding a hedgehog

Poppy holding a hedgehog

As part of my volunteering at the hedgehog rescue, I have helped with visits to local primary schools to teach young people about this species and what they can do to help them. I really enjoy these school visits and engaging with the public, but especially with young people who are so curious and as excited as I am to be talking about nature. So, when I saw an advert for volunteering with the education and events team at the Norfolk Wildlife Trust, I thought this would be a great opportunity for me to have more fun doing this and build my confidence and skills further.

I volunteer regularly at the Hickling reserve doing the monthly Wildlife Watch and Wilder Wardens sessions, and have also done various rock pooling, minibeasting and fossil hunting sessions. More recently, I joined in with my first school visit with NWT, where I got to talk to a class about hedgehogs to help them learn facts to teach their families in a special assembly. I really enjoy all of my volunteering, but especially Wildlife Watch sessions where other volunteers or members of staff join us to talk about their areas of expertise because I get to learn more too!

Volunteering with the NWT has helped me in many ways, one being building my confidence in delivering my own talks to audiences – it helps that I always get to talk about things I’m passionate about! Volunteering with the Wilder Learning Team especially is so enjoyable as I’m always getting to learn and have new experiences. I would definitely recommend volunteering with the NWT. Everyone I have worked with, staff and other volunteers, are so friendly and happy to be doing what they’re doing so I always come away from a day of volunteering feeling positive.

Poppy holding a hedgehog

Poppy visiting a local primary school

I have met so many different people through volunteering, from species experts that I get to learn from to young people with lots of questions for me. I’d particularly like to mention the team at Hickling, both in the visitor center and those out on the reserve, they’re great people to work with!

It feels like I leave every event with new knowledge and a curiosity to go and learn more about what we’ve been doing. But, if I had to choose something that I find particularly educational for myself it would be the reserve management skills I learn alongside our Wilder Wardens. I’d never done much hands-on, practical conservation and management before except for if you count helping my dad in the garden when I was younger. But in the year Wilder Wardens has been running, we’ve already done so much. I am particularly pleased with the benches we built for Hickling, as now we have comfier seats to use during our sessions here!

Header image: Poppy at a Wilder Wardens event
 
Share this

Latest Blog Posts

 Norfolk’s lost lake is a haven for wildlife  Norfolk’s lost lake is a h...
by Robert Morgan on 16 Apr, 2024
A Siberian gem A Siberian gem
by Oscar Lawrence on 03 Apr, 2024
From our reserves: The return of a long lost stream From our reserves: The retu...
by Robert Morgan, NWT Reserves Officer on 02 Apr, 2024
Last of the winter jobs on our reserves Last of the winter jobs on ...
by Robert Morgan, NWT Reserves Officer on 29 Feb, 2024
Hamza Yassin: Life Behind The Lens Hamza Yassin: Life Behind T...
by Oscar Lawrence on 27 Feb, 2024
Is the humble toad the real harbinger of spring?  Is the humble toad the real...
by Robert Morgan on 20 Feb, 2024
NWT employs stubborn old goats NWT employs stubborn old goats
by Robert Morgan on 20 Feb, 2024
Short-eared owls: their magic and majesty Short-eared owls: their mag...
by Oscar Lawrence on 12 Feb, 2024
Volunteer Spotlight: Tim Suiter Volunteer Spotlight: Tim Su...
by Tim Suiter on 05 Feb, 2024
Some old-fashioned care is needed in the winter Some old-fashioned care is ...
by Robert Morgan, NWT Reserves Officer on 02 Feb, 2024
Could a once abundant Norfolk fish become extinct?   Could a once abundant Norfo...
by Robert Morgan on 23 Jan, 2024
Wild is the wind Wild is the wind
by Robert Morgan on 23 Jan, 2024
Waxwing Winter Waxwing Winter
by Oscar Lawrence on 17 Jan, 2024
Volunteer Spotlight: Tricia Dolamore Volunteer Spotlight: Tricia...
by Tricia on 10 Jan, 2024
January on our reserves January on our reserves
by NWT on 04 Jan, 2024
Robin Redbreast Robin Redbreast
by Oscar Lawrence on 19 Dec, 2023
A Christmas Wish for Nature A Christmas Wish for Nature
by Robert Morgan on 18 Dec, 2023
November on our reserves November on our reserves
by Robert Morgan, NWT Reserves Assistant on 07 Dec, 2023
Our vision for Hickling Broad Our vision for Hickling Broad
by Eliot Lyne, NWT CEO on 07 Dec, 2023
Winter wildlife on the North Norfolk coast Winter wildlife on the Nort...
by Robert Morgan on 05 Dec, 2023
Meander through the meadow - Sweet Briar Marshes guided walk Meander through the meadow ...
by Oscar Lawrence on 29 Nov, 2023
Kites and eagles: the falsely accused Kites and eagles: the false...
by Oscar Lawrence on 20 Nov, 2023
Nurturing nature with love Nurturing nature with love
by Nick Acheson on 14 Nov, 2023
Foray into fungi Foray into fungi
by Robert Morgan on 07 Nov, 2023