Beautiful Butterflies

It's always good to have a plan B up your sleeve, especially if you're relying on the weather. And so it was this week, with the cancellation of the annual Clynfyw cricket tournament due to all the rain. An unpredictable and changeable climate, therefore, was an excellent way to lead into today's blog. All about butterflies.

Many of our service users love nature. It's obvious to see, when the weekly planners are full of activities such as local walks in rural places, visits to wildlife centres and a healthy amount of gardening. And so by combining this interest with a structured project book, we begin to develop understanding about the world around us, as well as having fun. Our butterfly book is summarised by an A4 sheet with pictures of 20 of Britain's most popular butterflies. This 'contact sheet' is perfect for bringing along on a walk, to help count and identify the butterflies we encounter.

What we discovered, on an overcast afternoon in Mynyddygarreg, is that butterfly species are low this year. During a long walk around the village, Adrian spotted Small Tortoiseshells and Small Coppers, but that was about it. Once back home, we were able to write the date and place of our observations into the appropriate sheet in our custom-made project book. We'll repeat the exercise on a sunnier day soon and knowing where all the buddleias are, we'll no doubt be able to add to our list. And seeing how much the boys (and the staff) enjoyed the whole process, we'll be rolling it out to our other residential services too.

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