By Jeremy LeLean, Soil Security Programme

For those who like to encounter wildlife up close and personal come to UnEarthed 2017 where the renowned Soil Safari will be on display where you can hunt for worms (and other things!) in the soil.

UnEarthed 2017 is the Natural Environmental Research Council’s science and public engagement exhibition.  It will take place from the 17th to 20th of November at the Dynamic Earth attraction in Edinburgh.

Led by Professor Chris Collins, the Soil Security Programme team will be representing the University of Reading there, having been selected by NERC through a competitive process.

The team will present cutting edge soil research in an accessible way with a range of exhibits and activities.

These will include ways for both adults and children to learn about soil in a fun and informative way.  For example, the threats to soil of concrete capping and erosion will be shown with an activity that requires visitors to fire water pistols at different soil coverings.

For those who prefer a slightly gentler approach to soil creepy crawlies, there is a soil lucky dip with artificial soil and wildlife.

Lastly, visitors will be  encouraged to become a soil scientist themselves, by taking a soil pH testing away with them.  They can then test soil in their garden, park school or communal area and send the results to the Soil Security Programme, who will use the results to build up an interactive national map of acid and alkaline soils on the Soil Security website.


If you are able to come to Dynamic Earth, Edinburgh, on 18 or 19 November the Soil Security Programme team look forward to seeing you at stand 23 to hunt for worms (and other creepy crawlies). Find out more about UnEarthed here >


If you can’t make it to Edinburgh for this exhibition, but would still like to take part in the national pH soil testing trial, please email with your postal address. The team will send you a pH testing kit and instructions on how to take part in this UK-wide research.