Uniquely Wild Mother’s Day Gifts

Photograph by Tom Marshall

Photograph by Tom Marshall

Swans by Zsuzsanna Bird

Swans by Zsuzsanna Bird

Mother’s day is the perfect time to show your mum how much she means to you, and what better way to do that than to give her a uniquely wild gift and help your local Wildlife Trust at the same time!

We’ve picked our top 5 wild gifts that we think any mum would love…

1. First up on our top 5 is a Wildlife Trust membership. Your mum would be helping to protect local wildlife by enabling us to install nest boxes, manage local woodlands, survey red squirrels in mid Wales and carry out dolphin research, along with a mountain of other important conservation tasks. This is a gift that will keep on giving all year around for as little as a cup of coffee per month (or a one off payment if you prefer). By giving your mum a Wildlife Trust membership for mothers day she could be giving a gift to wildlife throughout 2017 and even into 2018.

The Wildlife Trust of South and West Wales rely heavily on memberships, our only stable source of income, in order to carry out our vital conservation work. There are a variety of different types of memberships available, e.g. individual, joint, family etc. As well as helping protect local wildlife now and for future generations to enjoy, your mum will also receive our magazine three times a year, our monthly e-newsletter updating her on what the Trust is getting up to, early booking for Skomer Island and a discount on our reserves guide. You can join either by calling us at the office on 01656 724 100, and pay by credit card, (ask for Nic, Jane or Jon) or visit our membership page to fill out our online forms.

2. Second on our list of unique gifts for mothers day are our wildlife adoptions. We have several wildlife species that are available for adoption;

  1. Befriend a Badger - Adopting a badger will help with our work promoting a Tuberculosis vaccine as a viable alternative to culling.
  2. Protect a Puffin - Adopting a puffin will help with our work on Skomer and Skokholm Islands.
  3. Save a Seal - Adopting a seal will help with our work in monitoring the seals and their pups on Skomer Island to ensure that the population is healthy.
  4. Rescue a Red Squirrel - Adopting a red squirrel will help support our project in the Tywi Forest which supports and monitors the red squirrel population.
  5. Help a Hedgehog - Adopting a Hedgehog will help us campaign for better legislation to protect and improve wildlife habitats through south & west Wales.

Your mum (if this is her first adoption) will receive an introductory letter, a personalised adoption certificate, a fact sheet and soft toy of her/your chosen wildlife species. Each year that she continues to adoption wildlife your mum will receive a report on how the species are doing in Wales (usually sent out in Autumn). If you adopt a Puffin for your mum, she will get a ring number from a specific Puffin on Skomer or Skokholm Island. In the report we will endeavour to tell her whether or not her Puffin has been sighted during the year.

Adoptions are £25 and if you would like to adopt a wildlife species for your mum this mothers day visit our wildlife shop.

3. If your mum is a wildlife, nature and/or outdoor enthusiast, we’ve got just the place. Skomer Island is a haven for people who want to get up close and personal to Britain’s beautiful nature and take in some fresh air. Voted Britain’s Favourite Nature Reserve of 2016 in the Landlove magazine awards the island is home to an array of breath-taking seabirds.

The island opens in April and even though overnight stays are mostly fully booked now throughout May, June and July, you can still visit the island on a day trip to behold this natural phenomenon. The Trust does not have a booking system for day visitors due to the unpredictability of the sea, which can sometimes cause the boats not to run. For this reason tickets are sold at Lockley Lodge in Martin’s Haven on the morning of the day you would like to travel. We advise people to arrive early at the lodge to get your tickets as it is first come first serve. There will be several boat times and the first will depart Lockley lodge around 10am. You can then spend the day wondering the island and witnessing the thousands of seabirds in their colonies, tons of rabbits, and spotting marine wildlife from the cliffs. Take a packed lunch with you, although the island doesn’t have any shops or cafes, it does have a few truly beautiful picnic spots along the paths.

Members of The Wildlife Trust of South and West Wales land on the island for free but there is a boat fair payable to the boat man; £11 per person. Landing for non members is £10 per person. If you would like more information about day trips to skomer visit call us on 01656 724100.

4. If you were thinking more along the lines of an Island stay as a mothers day gift don’t forget about Skomer’s sister Island; Skokholm. The beautiful mile long island is draped with red sandstone cliffs and offers a quieter experience with only approx 17 people staying on the island at a time and no day trippers.

In spring and summer it is colonised by tens of thousands of nesting seabirds returning to their island home. By day there is frenetic activity among the Puffins, Razorbills, Guillemots and gulls and by night there is a more vocal but equally hectic commotion from the Manx Shearwaters and Storm Petrels. Find our more about booking and prices.

There are often some fascinating migrants to look out for that are passing through.

5. And finally a stay in Oak Tree Cottage is sure to warm your mum's heart this mother's day! Off the beaten track, nestled in the heart of the beautiful Welsh Wildlife Centre & Teifi Marshes Nature Reserve, Pembrokeshire, you will find the newly refurbished Oak Tree Cottage or the ‘Cwtch’ as we like to call it!

A brand new self catering holiday let that’s perfect for those wanting to relax in comfort whilst surrounded by our amazing Welsh wildlife. Small and perfectly formed, the cottage is great for a small family or a couple. Children will love playing in the Cherry Tree Adventure Park, discovering the Willow Maze, exploring our fantastic Nature Trails on foot or two wheels, and meeting our resident Water Buffalo. Adults will immediately unwind to the sounds of nature and enjoy the peace and tranquillity of this truly unique setting.

Book here or take a look at 2017's prices.

If you’re looking to keep things on a bit of a budget this mother’s day and just want to spend some quality time with the family, why not have a lovely walk around one of our many beautiful nature reserves, topped off with a coffee and a cake in one of our welcoming visitor centres.

Please be aware that some of these gifts, such as the adoptions and the membership, need to be order in advance in order for you to receive them in time to give to your mum for mother’s day.

If you think some of these gifts are too good to just give only to your mum, and you’ve been thinking ‘I would like to get me some of that’ while reading, then fear not! These gifts are open to anyone, whether you want to surprise a friend with an Island stayadopt a pair of puffins as a wedding gift, or want a membership of your own to help local wildlife, we won’t turn anyone away. Just give us a ring on 01656 724100 or e-mail us - info@welshwildlife.org