For their December indoor meeting, RSPB North Bucks Group will welcome Dr Pat Morris MBE for his presentation on what many would describe as Britain’s favourite mammal.
He will talk about their visits to our gardens, how far they roam, the impacts of putting out food for them, and about caring for sick and injured hedgehogs and releasing them back into the wild.
Dr. Pat Morris was Senior Lecturer in Zoology at Royal Holloway, University of London until his early retirement in 2002. There he taught generations of students, many of whom have worked in biology and conservation as a result. Best known for his studies on hedgehogs, over the last 50 years, he has also led studies of water voles, bats, edible dormice and red squirrels.
He managed a major research and conservation programme on hazel dormice for 'English Nature', the Government's former wildlife conservation agency. This ‘species-led’ approach resulted in significantly advancing knowledge of this previously elusive animal, established the national Dormouse Monitoring Programme (the first for a terrestrial British mammal) and successfully raised public awareness of important conservation issues.
He was a Vice President of the London Wildlife Trust, and is a member of two other county wildlife trusts, the RSPB, various Natural History and conservation organisations, and the first Honorary Life Member of the Guild of Taxidermists. For three years he was a co-Director of the International Summer School on the Breeding and Conservation of Endangered species at Jersey Zoo. In 2000 he was appointed President of the British Hedgehog Preservation Society and is a key scientific advisor to the Peoples Trust for Endangered Species
He has published over 80 scientific papers, mostly about mammals, and written books on bats, dormice, hedgehogs and (with his wife) the natural history of lakes. He was consultant for the Reader's Digest Nature Lover's Library volume on British Mammals, and a consultant for the partworks ‘Wildlife of Britain’ and ‘The Living Countryside’, as well contributing to many natural history books and magazines.
In 2012 he was awarded the Founder's Medal by the Society for the History of Natural History and was made M.B.E. in the 2015 New Year’s Honours List for ‘Services to the natural and historic environment’.
And despite that significant list of accolades, we've only listed the half of it!
What else can we tell you about this fountain of knowledge?
Well, we know that he always wears a tie, usually the same one...
The evening indoor meeting will be held on Thursday (December 14) at The Cruck Barn, City Discovery Centre, Bradwell Abbey.
Doors open at 7.15pm for a prompt start at 7.45pm. Free tea/coffee during the interval. Group members £3; visitors welcome £4; children £1.