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Winter talks

Winter Talks 2015 / 2016


Our winter talks programme began in September 2015, with one talk a month. Each talk is held in the magnificent Museum of Natural History in central Oxford. Each talk starts at 7pm and has a maximum capacity of 300 people. It is not possible to reserve seats for this year's talk series so please arrive early to avoid disappointment. 


Monday 14th September

  • Professor Anna Nekaris (Oxford Brookes University) - slow loris and the Little Fireface Project (see further info about the project here)


Monday 12th October

  • Dr George McGavin - Monkey Planet: Based on George's latest BBC series about the primate family    


Monday 9th November  

  • Dr Peter Shepherd (BSG Ecology) - An introduction to the ecology of bats in Oxfordshire

  • NB: Oxford Bat Group members will be allowed to attend this lecture for free


Monday 7th December

  • Matt Hobbs (BSG Ecology) - An introduction to marine mammals


Monday 11 January (2016)

  • Dr Joelene Hughes (WildCRU) - Snow leopards and blue sheep in China


Monday 8th February  (2016)  

  • Ellen Lee (Thames Valley Environmental Records Centre) - Otters


Monday 7th March (2016)       

  • Mark Elliott - Beavers in England: an update from Devon


We would like to take the opportunity to thank the Museum of Natural History for supporting our winter talks programme and providing such an excellent venue. 



Activities in 2015


The Green Fair, Saturday 5th December, 10:30-16:30

We will have a stall at the Green Fair at the Oxford Town Hall on Saturday 5th December. Although affiliated with the Green Party we are not using the event to express any political views, it is merely another opportunity to share our passion for mammals with more people. Please come along to see our stall where you can make a Christmas card, ID some mammals and buy some books of interest.


Entry is £2, payable at the door: Further information about the event can be found here.  


@ Laura Grant

@ Laura Grant

@ Laura Grant

Dormouse Surveys as Part of the Oxfordshire Dormouse Project


Overview: We are looking for volunteers to survey the dormouse boxes and tubes installed in woodlands throughout Oxfodshire as part of the Oxfordshire Dormouse Project. A provisional list of survey dates is provided below (additional dates to follow).

Who can attend: Anyone is welcome to attend a survey, as long as they are an Oxon Mammal Group member and book in advance (spaces are limited). Everyone will be provided with training by the licenced ecologist on the day. Please wear appropriate clothing and bring food and drink.


Spaces are limited so please book early to avoid disappointment. Book here by filling in the online form.


A map of the woodland locations can be found at the following link: 


Oxfordshire Dormouse Project Survey Woodlands

Harvest Mouse Training Day, Saturday 1st November 2015


Where & When: Chimney Meadows main visitor car park (OX18 2EH or SP 35389 01255). From A420 take the road signposted to Tadpole Bridge and Bampton. Turn right just after Tadpole Bridge and Trout Inn, follow signs to Chimney. 11am to 4pm


Bring appropriate footwear (wellies, stout walking boots), wet weather and warm clothing, gloves and your keen eye-sight. Bring a packed lunch with you .


For members and BBOWT volunteers the training is free but booking is essential. Email Amanda to register for the event. 


Dormouse Nut Hunt, Saturday 17th October 2015


Where & When: Warren Bank (down near Warburg Nature Reserve), 10am-1pm

If you would like to learn how to identify dormouse nuts and want hints and tips for finding them, come along to this training event. Led by Pete Newbold.

Parking has been kindly arranged for us at the King William IV pub at Hailey (SU 643 859) from where it is approx 1km walk to the site. The pub gets busy so we need to limit ourselves to 10 cars. 


Free to members but booking is essential.

Email Pete to register for the event. 


Recent Events (Spring/Summer 2015)


PTES Dormouse Ecology Training Day, Thursday 13th August 2015


Ian White from PTES will be running a training day for volunteers without their own dormouse licence but who have volunteered to help with the Oxfordshire Dormouse Project. Full details of location and how to book are coming soon. 




Small Mammal Trapping, Friday 12th & Saturday 13th June


Where & When: Music Meadow near University Parks - Fri 6.30pm, Sat 8am - meet at the Pavilion at the end of Manor Road (off St Cross Road), past St Catherine's College
What to bring/wear: Sturdy shoes and dress for the weather
Overview: OxMG's Maria Walker will take us through the process of small mammal trapping on Friday night, setting traps which we will then check together on Saturday morning. You may see wood mice, field and bank voles, and common, pygmy or perhaps even water shrews. We also hope to deploy some camera traps to see if we can film some of the local badgers and deer.

Booking and more information here (Friday) and here (Saturday).

Woodfest, Sunday 27th September 2015

Besselsleigh Wood Group are running a Woodfest in the woods between 11.00am and 3.00pm on Sunday 27th September. 


It is a relaxed and family friendly event with food, drinks, wood-crafts, walks, children’s story telling and face-painting etc.







Wild Wood Day, Sunday 20th September 2015


An outdoor family fun day will be held at the Sutton Courtenay Environmental Education Centre. The Oxon Mammal Group will have a stand within interesting specimens, crafts and other activities! Further information will be coming soon.







Oxfordshire Goes Wild, Saturday 19th September 2015


A fun family event held between 12 – 4pm at River and Rowing Museum, Henley RG9 1BF


For more information contact 



Wild Fair, Saturday 13th June 2015


Where & When: Oxford University Museum of Natural History, 10-4

Please come along and bring your family and friends! We're also looking for volunteers if you'd like to help us run our stall on the day, even if it's just for an hour or so.
More information about the Fair is available on the Oxford Festival of Nature website - there will be LOADS to see and do (and eat).




< Location Confirmed to those Attending>

Introduction to Dormice, Tuesday 9th June: Introduction to Dormice


Where & When: Cutteslowe Community Centre, 7-8pm
Overview: OxMG's Pete Newbold will give an introductory talk on dormouse ecology and conservation, and will go on to tell us more about the new dormouse project in Oxfordshire, generously funded by TOE2.

Booking and more information here.

Mammal Detectives, Saturday 6th June


Where & When: Wytham Woods - meet at car park on hill (just up from Wytham village) at 10am
What to bring/wear: Picnic lunch, suitable clothes for the weather, sturdy shoes
Overview: We will take a walk through Wytham Woods with expert Nigel Fisher, looking out for signs of mammal activity and meeting up with some of the scientists for whom the woods are a living laboratory. Expect to see signs of deer and badgers as well as small mammals and bats. We'll finish around 1pm at the top of the hill for a picnic lunch - please bring some snacks with you!

Booking and more information here.

Shotover Bat Walk, Friday 5th June


Where & When: Shotover Country Park - meet at car park on top of hill at 8pm
What to bring/wear: Torch, warm clothes, sturdy shoes
Overview: An introduction to Shotover Country Park (hopefully with some great evening views over Oxford) followed by a walk through the woods with our bat detectors. Suitable for children but bear in mind it will be dark by the end of the walk.

Booking and more information here.

Wednesday 18th March, 7.00pm

Oxfordshire Mammal Group AGM; The White House on the Abingdon Road, Oxford (upstairs function room).

This is an opportunity for you as members of a young group to let us know what has worked well and what hasn't, and influence what we do over the next year.

We'd really like to hear from you so please do come along if you can.


Members only.

Saturday 10th January, 10am to 2pm


Dormouse Training, Aston Rowant NNR, near Stokenchurch.

If you would like to learn how to identify dormouse nuts and want hints and tips for finding them, come along to this training event. Led by Pete Newbold.

Free to members. Booking essential, as we are limited to 15 people per course.
Finalised information provided on booking.

Saturday 17th January, 10am to 2pm

Dormouse Training, Withymeads Nature Reserve, near Goring.

If you would like to learn how to identify dormouse nuts and want hints and tips for finding them, come along to this training event. Led by Amanda Lloyd.

Free to members. Booking essential, as we are limited to 15 people per course.
Finalised information provided on booking. 

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Anchor 7

Domestic cat predation: what is your cat getting up to when it leaves through the cat flap?
Becky Thomas.

Cats are one of the country's favourite pets. With such high densities of cats in urban areas, what effect are these predators having on our wildlife and can we do anything to reduce their impact? Becky Thomas of the University of Reading and Chair of Berkshire Mammal Group will tell us more.

Monday 12th January 7pm: Oxford Natural History Museum
All welcome (booking advised:
OxMG members free; non-members £3.00 on door.




The pine marten and polecat in Britain
Lizzie Croose.

Vincent Wildlife Trust's Lizzie Croose talks about the ecology of the pine marten and the polecat, two of the rarest and most elusive mustelids in Britain. Lizzie will discuss current research by VWT on both species, including an exciting project to reinforce pine marten populations in England and Wales.

Monday 9th February 7pm: Oxford Natural History Museum
All welcome (booking advised:
OxMG members free; non-members £3.00 on door.




Brown hares vs rabbits
Lucy Lush.

Lucy Lush of the Thames Valley Environmental Records Centre talks about the ecology of and interactions between the brown hare and the European rabbit. Lucy's PhD research compared species distribution in lowland pastures and investigated the influence of cattle and sheep.

Monday 9th March 7pm: Oxford Natural History Museum
All welcome (booking advised:
OxMG members free; non-members £3.00 on door.

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