Eel in the Classroom 2018

Project Category: Registered charity

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  • Our Story

    BART are happy to announce that in spring 2018 we will be running our incredibly popular Eel in the Classroom project, thanks to funding from the Greggs Foundation!

    The Greggs Foundation is the charitable arm of Greggs, with funding from the 2015 charge for single-use plastic carrier bags. Before the charge over 7.6 billion single-use plastic bags were given to customers by major supermarkets in England alone! The Greggs Foundation have donated proceeds from the charge to support environmental education projects for local communities in and around rivers, across Wales, Scotland and England.

    The Eel in the Classroom project engages pupils with the wildlife in their local river by bringing the wildlife to them, in the form of the critically endangered European eel! The European eel has suffered a 97% decline since the 1970s and is more endangered than the red panda. Most people don’t know much about eels as there are few around and because they usually come out at night, until now…

    This project will give children and their families a chance to engage with their local river like never before. Through this project, schoolchildren look after a tankful of eels for a whole term, feeding them, cleaning the tank, watching them grow and most importantly, learning about their fascinating lifecycle and the small steps they can take to improve our rivers for eels and other wildlife. Children really can get up close and personal with the baby eels (called elvers) and delve into a watery world which they didn’t even know existed! At the end of the school term we hold a release event for the whole school to release the elvers back into the river. 

    This project helps to increase awareness of the plight of the European eel and teaches children, the conservationists of the future, about the fascinating wildlife we can find in our river and why it’s important to protect it. As the decline in eel populations is mostly down to human causes, it’s important to educate everyone about the impact we are having on rivers and the wildlife that lives in them. The Eel in the Classroom project is a great way to bring the river world into schools like never before! 

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