The Earl of Pembroke

As part of Seafair Haven 2014, David Lort-Phillips from the HMS Beagle Project organised for the Earl of Pembroke to visit Pembrokeshire.  Thanks to sponsorship from the Bluestone Foundation we were able to take a group of students on to this magnificent vessel for a sail around the Milford Haven Waterway and out past St Ann's Head. (more…)
Earl feature


Exploring the Cleddau

Monday 20th October 2014:

cosheston 20.10.2014

Bug Hunting with the PLC

Friday 17th October & Tuesday 21st October 2014: Bug hunting & microscopes with pupils from the Pembrokeshire Learning Centre in Neyland.

Neyland PLC

Plankton with the VC Gallery

Wednesday 15th October 2014:  Plankton workshop with the VC Gallery.

VC Gallery 15.10.2014

We have teamed up with Barry John from the VC Gallery to link science workshops with art thanks to funding from the Gregg’s Foundation.  We delivered a plankton workshop for some of the VC Gallery attendees; they now have the task of drawing some of the plankton and developing a cartoon strip.  We can’t wait to see the results!

Rock Pools & Microscopes

Rock pooling & microscopes with Saundersfoot year 6.

Wednesday 8th October 2014:

Rock pooling on Lydstep Haven with Mrs Cook and her year 6 class.

Braving the rain  Common shore crabs matingLydstep rock pooling  Velvet swimming crab moulting

We were lucky enough to find a Velvet Swimming Crab in the process of moulting.  This was an exciting event for the pupils to watch! Then they found a pair of Common Shore Crabs mating.

Velvet swimming crab moulting 08.10.2014  'CRAB'


Thursday 9th October 2014:

Rock pooling on Lydstep Haven with Mr. Davies and his year 6 class.


Curled Octopus 09.10.2014  Curled Octopus1

The group found a Curled Octopus during our rock pooling session.  It’s only the second one we have ever found in 10 years of rock pooling.  Needless to say Mrs Cook and her class were quite jealous!

Curled Octopus 09.10.2014 (2)  Brittle star

Mr. Davies' class   'OCTOPUS'


Tuesday 14th October 2014:

Microscope workshops at Saundersfoot School.

Plankton workshop  Looking at crab carapace

We visited Mr Davies’ class in the morning and then Mrs Cook’s class in the afternoon with our microscopes and local plankton samples.  We looked at life cycles, adaptations and food chains before using the microscopes to look at the plankton and of course we had a bit of time to look at Marten’s scab (see picture below on the left),

Marten's Scab  Identifying plankton


Broad Haven – Cleaning up West Dale

Monday 13th October 2014: Broad Haven School cleaning up marine litter on West Dale.

View of Skokholm  Dead cetaceanWest Dale  DSCN1762

Mrs Grey’s class from Broad Haven School did a fantastic job cleaning up West Dale Beach.  They all got stuck in and collected 8 bags of rubbish and several large plastic containers.

Rock Pooling With Templeton

Tuesday 7th October 2014: Rock pooling with year 5 & 6 from Templeton School – Lydstep Haven

Templeton - Lydstep Haven 07.10.2014

We started our day with Templeton school with an egg case hunt along the strandline at Lydstep Haven.  We found 13 egg cases in total, 12 were those of Nursehounds and 1 was a Small Spotted Catshark.  Unfortunately one of the Nursehound egg cases contained a dead shark however 3 of them had alive sharks in so Ginny and Russ from Silent World To You came to rescue.  They are now looking after the 3 sharks and will release them when they are ready.  We had a successful rock pooling session, pupils found 5 different species of crab plus lots of fish and a long bootlace worm.  After ice cream at Lydstep thanks to Megan’s Dad, Mr Williams we headed back to the schools for a plankton and microscope workshop.  The pupils learnt about lifecycles, food chains and adaptations!  The pupils chose their 2 favourite creatures from the day to draw.  Once they had drawn them they then had to think about what adaptations the creatures had to help them survive in their habitat.

Wednesday 1st October 2014: Year 5 & 6 from Puncheston Community Primary School – Exploring Puncheston Commons.

Pond dipping   Bombus rupestris

Year 5 & 6 took us on adventure to their commons, we had never been there before so they gave us the grand tour and showed us some of their ‘short cuts’ which weren’t that short!  We had a great time pond dipping and then hunted for mini beasts in the long grass on the commons.  We came across a female Cuckoo Bee (Bombus rupestris) who parasitizes another species of bumble bee (Bombus lapidarius).  Both species look very similar but B. rupestris has dark wing membranes and a less dense coat!

Fox moth caterpillar  Caterpillar excrement

On our walk back to school some of the pupils spotted this Fox Moth caterpillar, back in the classroom we examined its excrement under the microscope.

Microscopes  Leaf art

After lunch the class used our microscopes to look at their favourite mini beasts, and then during their afternoon break the pupils collected colourful autumn leaves to create a book mark.


Saturday 27th September 2014: STEMFEST at the Bridge Innovation Centre.

STEMFEST 27.09.2014

We spent the day at the Bridge Innovation Centre in Pembroke Dock for Pembrokeshire County Councils STEMFEST event.  There were various activities throughout the day for schools and families to participate in.  We were lucky enough to be able to use a planetarium from Dark Sky Wales for our bioluminescent event.  Professor Tony Campbell, the founder of the Darwin Centre gave an introductory talk on bioluminescence and its medical uses.  After this the participants came into our ‘deep sea’ dome where they further explored the world of bioluminescence and learnt all about the research of Dr Valerie Morse who carried out her PhD on the bioluminescence of hydroids from the Milford Haven waterway.

STEMFEST2 27.09.2014



Amroth & Colby Woodland Gardens

Tuesday 23rd September 2014: Seine netting, pond dipping and kick sampling with home schoolers.

Amroth 23.09.2014 Colby1 23.09.2014 Colby2 23.09.2014



Adaptations With Monkton School

Monday 22nd September 2014: Rock pooling at Lydstep Haven and a microscope workshop with Year 6 from Monkton School.

Monkton 22.09.2014

Whilst at Lydstep Haven year 6 from Monkton learnt all about the different adaptations rocky shore creatures have to help them survive in their habitat.  Back at school they used microscopes to look at  different types of local plankton and considered what adaptations the plankton had.  As well as looking at plankton under the microscope they were able to look at random items from the classroom.  We also brought a dead spider with us which proved very popular from the hairs on its legs to its fangs!