PEOPLE looking for a project to fill their lockdown time can now join the national effort against invasive non-native species in the countryside.

The Scottish Invasive Species Initiative has launched Alien Detectives – an educational online resource to help the young, and not so young, learn more about these invaders, which often arrived in the country from overseas as novel ornamental plants for domestic gardens before jumping the hedge and running wild. The pack includes crafts, quizzes, worksheets, presentations and puzzles all themed around invasive species and the river environment.

SISI project manager Callum Sinclair said: “Our project team has been busy while homeworking during the lockdown to produce these fantastic resources. We hope that becoming ‘Alien Detectives’ will bring many hours of enjoyment to individuals and families during lockdown, especially at a time when most young people are not in a regular school environment and might be looking for a new challenge or activities to continue their learning.

"Invasive non-native species might be a new topic to many but it is a really important one – invasive species can have a major impact on our environment and native wildlife and are responsible for significant biodiversity loss in Scotland and across the world. We hope these resources will help raise awareness of the impacts of invasive species and inspire more young people to learn something about them.

“No prior knowledge is needed and there’s lots to learn and have fun with so become an Alien Detective and help us tackle invasive species today!”

All of the ‘Alien Detectives’ resources can be found at