World Wetlands Day 2001: Poland

23/02/2001

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The highly protected Slonsk Reserve, located within Warta Mouth Landscape Park, has been designated as a Ramsar Site since 1984. This was our first annual celebration of World Wetlands Day! We loved the idea so much that we decided to celebrate World Wetlands Day three times; complete with contests, food, field trips, and slide shows!

Thursday and Friday, February 1 and 2 were special days for school students. Students in Poland annually have the first two weeks of February as winter break, however many schools have optional field trips at this time. A total of 150 students took time from their vacations to visit the Park with their schools. They had a great time playing (educational) games, while learning about the importance of wetlands and their continued protection.

Saturday, February 3 was an Open House for the public. This was an opportunity for the public to see our laboratory and classroom, where they had the chance to inspect invertebrates under our various microscopes and identify indicator species, and chemically test water samples for pH, hardness, nitrites, etc. Participants could observe the Park from our viewing tower, watch a slide show presentation on the Wildlife of Slonsk Reserve, and then go on a birding excursion with our Biologists. The winners of our student contests were announced; and all of the artwork entered was in view. We also had a display entitled "Treasures from Wetlands", which included cosmetics, medicines, jewelry, baskets, musical instruments and the like. And food, we mustn't forget the food! On offer were sweet and savory foods made from wetland dependant plants and animals.

A fun time was had by all! And to top it all off, our celebrations of World Wetlands Day was featured in the local newspaper and on local television.

Barbara Stoff
rezerwat sloñsk [ slonsk@go.home.pl ]

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"This is a part of one of the school groups that had World Wetlands Day activities. They are coming back from the canal where they collected water samples."

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"Many families participated in our WWD Open House - here they are looking at all the displays in our front foyer."

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"People behaving just like birds, and flocking towards the food."

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"A game of wetland charades to finish off a day of fun and learning for one of our school groups. These children were the ocean, complete with a ship, shark and gulls flying overhead."

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"Education Specialist Magda M¹drowska presenting prizes to the winners of our contest. Students made representations of wetland animals out of natural materials."

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"Education Specialist Dorota Wypychowska with some of our Open House Day participants, testing water samples."

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"Some of the winning sculptures from area school students."

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