Little Tern Challenge

Update!!!! See message below…

Newsflash for our Little Tern experts:

A fence to protect the Little Terns has now been built! This was done by the Countryside Rangers from Redcar Council with help from Jacky the Coastal & Wading Birds Officer from Tees Valley Wildlife Trust. Very exciting news: two Little Terns have been seen at South Gare, this week! At first, they were sitting on the beach, close to the sea. Maybe they were having a rest after flying all the way from Africa. Then they flew around over the enclosure. Were they looking for a nest site? We hope so.

 I’m afraid they were too far away for photographs but this is a link to a photo of a Little Tern on Twitter that was taken last week over the other side of the River Tees:

 Lots of Ringed Plover are also on the beach (see picture). These birds also like to nest on the dunes and beach, so they face some of the same problems as Little Terns

Good morning and welcome to today’s challenge, one with a difference!

This Challenge was created from a real problem that needs solving right now. Little Terns will be returning to the area in the next few weeks and without help it is possible that they will never come back. In terms of Teesside the Terns will become extinct. Conservationists have tried lots of solutions but still the Terns are in danger. Part of Tees Valley Wildlife Trust’s work is to protect Little Terns as part of the Coastal and Wading Birds Project, part of River Tees Rediscovered, and funded by Heritage Lottery. They need fresh ideas and that is where you come in. Please watch the video:

So your task is clear but can take several forms:

Is there something you could put in place where they nest to help protect them, a fence is erected every year so what more could be done to stop people (and their dogs) disturbing the nests? Diagrams of mechanisms, or posters to be erected at the site or what else?

The other line of attack is to make people aware before they even go to the nesting sites. Who could you write to or create a video for? What would you write? Or film? Could animation or a green screen help? This is a great opportunity to use all the great writing skills you learn in literacy lessons in a  real world, community action situation. Keep your audience in mind when producing your work, what will appeal to them to change their behaviour?

As always I’d appreciate pictures and evidence of children working as the day progresses. There will also be a live broadcast on this page from the nesting site featuring children from Newcomen children about 11.15am. If you have any questions for them or the wildlife warden please email me before 11am.

The live stream below featured the children from Newcomen Primary and we have even included the outtakes!

Tees Valley Wildlife Trust will be monitoring the day carefully and aim to implement some of the ideas that are generated to make a real difference to our local community.

Some Websites to help you:


NEWS FLASH – More to follow…


I suspect that we will be seeing the actual newsflash from Normanby in the very near future from Mr Shallow’s class:

And also Miss Alderson’s:

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