Mineral ID

It is sometimes really hard to relate the minerals I see underground to the professional sample pictures on places like Wiki and Google. All I wanted was to be sure that what I saw was a certain thing. Well, I’ve started a Flickr album showing actual minerals in actual mines in the hope that I can make it easier for everyone else to identify what you’re looking at. There are loads of omissions still, but it is a start!

Sphalerite (Gerionydd) (2)
LCMLA Mineral ID album.
A collection of various minerals that you are likely to encounter in LCMLA caves and mines around the UK. It is hoped that these real sample pictures will aid you in identifying what you are looking at underground. All specimens were collected for education purposes from waste hillocks or loosely on the floor and no mineral chipping occurred!

The Common Lizard

So, how many of you have ever seen a ‘common’ Lizard?

This little one was brought to me last week on a baking hot day by a group of kids from the Notts area. It must have been fresh out from its winter sleep as it was really dosile until I put it near a stream in the sun and it shot off.
Not one of the group of kids who’d assembled had ever seen a lizard before (outside a zoo), in fact most did not even know that we had them in this country.
Now this is forgivable, I’ve not seen many myself. I’ve only ever seen one Adder despite being outdoorsy all my life.
What is shocking is that some kids coming to the Peak District have never seen a sheep before! Some people do not have the luxury of escaping to the countryside either because of background, society or money and those kids who never leave the city miss out on those experiences that some of us take for granted.

The moral of the story – assume nothing and be prepared to introduce people to everything you are already used to. A perfect opportunity to inspire and encourage a love of the natural world and a reason to stay passionate about it as a practitioner.
Not everyone has the same experiences and peoples’ backgrounds can be poles apart, even in the same country. After all, they could probably tell you loads that you don’t know – all about their local graffiti tags or Angry Birds and other stuff, even if they have never seen a Common Lizard.