• RSPB Middleton Lakes celebrates its tenth birthday, here's a timely reminder why nature reserves still matter

    I am often asked what role nature reserves play in modern nature conservation.  There are so many things that we want from land - for example food, clean water and flood protection - some believe that our emphasis should be on engineering wildlife into working landscapes rather than worrying about isolated oases which are expensive to buy and hard to maintain.  Of course, we work with land managers to help provide space…

    • 27 Feb 2017
  • Eight steps to a Greener UK

    The Prime Minister has promised to trigger Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty by the end of next month.   This action will signal the beginning of the end of our membership of the European Union - with March 2019 becoming the deadline for the completion of negotiations.  

    So it is time for the UK Government to demonstrate it understands the jeopardy and opportunity that Brexit poses to the environment and that it has a comprehensive…

    • 22 Feb 2017
  • The case for continued cooperation across Europe

    We don't yet know the future of our relationship with the European Union - the Brexit negotiations still have a long way to go.  But whatever happens, we do know that the UK and its wildlife will remain inextricably linked with the European continent and many of the threats (such as climate change) require responses beyond natural boundaries.

    I had a great reminder of this as I joined the BirdLife European partners…

    • 20 Feb 2017
  • This Valentine's Day...

    ...show the love for everything affected by climate change.

    Need inspiration?

    Watch this film by Ridley Scott Associates, featuring a bespoke poem written by the award-winning Anthony Anaxagorou, and brought to life by Charles Dance, Miranda Richardson, David Gyasi and Jason Isaacs with music by Elbow and the NHS Choir.  

    It's a love song like you've never heard before.  It has been produced for The Climate Coalition…

    • 14 Feb 2017
  • To one thousand blogs and beyond...

    I am told that this is my 1000th blog since May 2011.  I feel a little exhausted  just thinking about all the words that have been written. At times, it has felt like a labour of love.  But, for nearly six years, it has provided an outlet for me (and occasionally others through guest blogs) to reflect on the state of nature, the pressures it is facing and the action that we are taking to try to make things better for wildlife…

    • 13 Feb 2017
  • The battle of Lodge Hill (part 9): how you can help save Lodge Hill and its nightingales

    A fortnight ago, I was checking the press release we were issuing in response to the latest plans to develop Lodge Hill.  In it we referred to the 90% decline in our nightingale population in the last fifty years.  I paused on the 90% figure.  It didn't seem right.  I knew the decline was significant, but for some reason I hadn't equated the nightingale decline to that suffered by turtle dove or willow tit.  So, I…

    • 5 Feb 2017
  • Birdcrime 2015 - a guest blog by Angela Smith MP (Species Champion for Hen Harrier)

    The RSPB’s latest report on crimes against wild birds; Birdcrime 2015, goes live today. Although we’ve been publishing yearly reports on illegal killing of wild birds, this year the report is online. I am pleased to welcome Angela Smith MP, and Hen Harrier Species Champion, to give her reflections on the report and what it means for one species in particular - the hen harrier.

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    • 3 Feb 2017
  • A White Paper for a Green Brexit?

    Since 1973, membership of the EU has played a significant role in shaping environmental policy in the UK. As stated by the Chair of the Environmental Audit Committee in a letter to the Secretary of State for Exiting the EU last July: “There are few areas...where the decision to leave the EU will have a more widespread impact than the environment.”

    Although the Prime Minister’s speech on Brexit last…

    • 2 Feb 2017