Students Diaries Platform
The diary of Liceo Scientifico S. Cannizzaro
October 17 2023
Diary from group number 4
Yesterday, 17 October 2023, we, the students engaged in the “Erasmus+” project, had our first volunteering experience, which involved birds and their wellness. In a place called “Estany de Sils”, a rural area near by Girona, in collaboration with “Fundació Emys”, a Catalan non-profit foundation in charge of natural preservation at Sils, we managed to secure birds’ nests for the following winter season, but, most importantly, we had the opportunity to directly touch a volunteering experience, which was very emotional. Thanks to their constant and tireless work and an international project which is all about volunteering, we, tomorrow’s citizens understood the value of volunteering and, more generally, the value of social and morals duty.
The activity consisted on repairing bird nests, also called nest boxes, on a river path. We walked along the river looking for nest boxes, when we found one we had to stick to the following protocol: Wait 5-10 minutes next to the box to see if there was any movement inside, in case there was any movement we had to just write down the nest code and don’t touch it . Otherwise, if there wasn’t any movement, we had to write the code and carefully take the box off the tree with a 2-3 meters pole.
Once we had taken it off, we had to remove old nesting material from the box and put it in a red plastic bag, then, disinfect it, and if needed fix it with the corresponding materials. Once cleaned, we had to make sure the lid was secure, and put the box back up (video).
We saw a demonstration performed by a volunteer of the association that showed us how to do the work. She took down a box from a tree with the pole and opened it, then she emptied the box finding an egg and she cleaned it with spray. Later, we started the activity in groups, and we found three boxes.
The first had the code CT2101, it was full and in bad condition, as the superior part of it was bad, so we adjusted it with nails and the hammer. The second was the box INS1121, it was full and in good condition, but in it there were many ants. The third box didn’t have a code, it was full and in awful condition, because it was broken and there were many ants. For every box we took some feathers and put them in plastic bags for analysis.
Diary from group number 2
Initially, we needed to locate the nestbox, checking for the presence of birds and determining if it needed to be removed from the tree. Using a large stick, we carefully extracted the nestbox and collected any interesting items left behind by the birds in a bag. We also recorded observations such as the condition of the box and any changes to its location.
Additionally, we disinfected the nest to eradicate insects, including ants and potential illnesses. Finally, we repositioned the nestbox on the tree, making sure that the entrance hole wasn’t facing the front of the tree, as this could expose the eggs to potential threats, such as snakes.
We felt a strong sense of satisfaction in assisting the organization with nestbox repairs and a sense of responsibility for enhancing the lives of the local bird population. Furthermore, we found the experience to be valuable as it allowed us to work effectively as a team and collaborate with one another.
We felt really nice that we helped those people from the organization to fix the nestboxes and also felt reponsible because we managed to improve the birds’ lifes. In addition we think that it was a great experience because apart from volunteering, we also learned to work as a team and cooperate with each other.
Project number: 2022-1-ES01-KA220-SCH-000087095