• Your June Wildlife Questions Answered: Wildlife gardening with Adrian Thomas

    In this video we answer our most common questions that we get asked at this time of year, like a jazzier FAQ. This episode Jamie Wyver is joined by Adrian Thomas, the RSPB’s inhouse gardening expert to discuss what you can do to give nature a home, at home! 

    Jamie and Adrian talk you through some top gardening tips from what to plant in June to getting the most from your compost. June and July is the perfect time of year…

    • 23 Jun 2021
  • Etta Lemon’s legacy: Hannah Lemon and the healing power of nature

    Guest blog by author and journalist, Tessa Boase 

    Etta Lemon is some ancestor to lay claim to. The woman who built the early RSPB was fierce, uncompromising, obsessive and driven. She was nicknamed ‘The Dragon’ – but also, in softer mode, she was known as ‘Mother of the Birds’. A Victorian director of the Natural History Museum once hid down a stairwell rather than face Etta Lemon over some bird…

    • 15 Jun 2021
  • The power of poetry

    Kathryn Rossati 

    How far will you go for nature? Sponsored 5km run? A cake sale? How about writing a poem every week for a year...? Well, that’s exactly what Isle of Wight author, Kathryn Roassati, decided to do. Kathryn is an author of children's and young adult books, but this challenge might be her biggest yet in which she has taken on writing a poem about nature each week for an entire year. Amazingly, she is doing…

    • 28 May 2021
  • Glorious Spoonbills

    Who has already read their RSPB members magazine, Nature’s Home, Winter/Spring issue front to back yet? We sure have, and one particular story of the heroic return of UK spoonbills is worth sharing again. After a 300-year absence, spoonbills are returning to our shores. Dominic Couzens reveals how your support of conservation work has helped them – and explains the purpose of that cutlery-shaped bill... 

     

    Back…

    • 19 May 2021
  • Is it a worm? Is it a snake?...

    Jos Ashpole  

    As we move into summer (at least according to my calendar and not the weather), it is the perfect time to look out for some remarkable reptiles. The UK has six native reptile species, three snakes and three lizards. But one of these species appears not to fit into either category... the slow worm. So how do you tell the difference between a slow worm and a snake? And if they’re not a snake, what are they?…

    • 14 May 2021
  • Making an Impact: Your land purchasing powers

    Samuel Wrobel

    Thanks to you, we’ve been able to buy more land for nature – here are some of the special new places where we’re working for wildlife. In the first Making an Impact blog, we talked about some of the small but mighty wins for our wetland speciesFrom black-tailed godwits to bitterns, your support is helping nature not only improve, but thrive. The progress doesn’t stop there, and sometimes you…

    • 5 May 2021
  • Friend or foe

    Jen Chandler 

    You may have heard of ‘boxing hares’, but have you also heard of ‘boisterous buzzards’, or brawling blue tits? Spring signifies the awakening of life from the slumber of winter. It is also the time of year that many animals enter the breeding season. You may have seen changes in how animals are behaving, with some showing signs of aggression.  

     

    Back off! 

    Do you think male hares are the…

    • 29 Apr 2021
  • Your wonderful warblers

    In our recent Notes on Nature TV episode, RSPB’s Jamie Wyver gives a run-down of 10 warblers that you might find on a spring adventureIn total there are around 15 warbler species native to the UK, during winter some of them have been keeping warm further south in southern Europe and Africa, while others have been braving the British winter. Athe darker months draw to a close, many of the migrants will be returning to spend the summer…

    • 21 Apr 2021
  • Baby boom

    As RSPB members may have already read, we’re in the midst of a ‘baby boom’! As we head towards summer, keep your eye out for more and more youngsters learning to take to the wing for the first time. Mike Unwinnature writer and enthusiast recently wrote an article for our members exclusive magazine Nature’s Home. We thought it was too good, and too cute, not to share a snapshot of Mike’s words on natures…

    • 19 Apr 2021
  • A visit to RSPB Blacktoft Sands

    Daphne Pleace 

    I remember first visiting the stunning RSPB Blacktoft Sands as a newbie member, exploring as many nature reserves as I could. It was at Blacktoft I saw my first ever displaying marsh harriers… and what a display it turned out to be.  

    Display as in birding terminology: all those wonderful courtship behaviours that birds do. But this was the display. The dancing take-away" I call it. The one where the male…

    • 15 Apr 2021
  • Make a real difference for nature as you shop

    Laura Sherwood-King

    There are so many ways to support nature! There are the conventional ways you may have thought of, like setting up bug hotels, reducing your carbon footprint and running a marathon to raise funds.  

    Did you know that you can also help by fundraising while you shop and sell online – usually at no extra cost to you? Here are six ways to save nature as you spend.


    eBay

    eBay is a sustainable way to buy and sell unwanted…

    • 6 Apr 2021
  • Watching kestrels from the kitchen, and other amazing wildlife experiences

    Guest blog by RSPB President Miranda Krestovnikoff 

    I came to birdwatching rather late in life but now my days are totally focused around the birds I see and the interactions I have with them. 

    RSPB President, Miranda Krestovnikoff - Jesper Mattias (rspb-images.com)
    RSPB President, Miranda Krestovnikoff - Jesper Mattias (rspb-images.com)

    We have a pair of kestrels nesting in our garden and they have become so used to us that we can walk around the garden and just watch them flying from tree to…

    • 1 Apr 2021
  • Making an Impact: Your Wetland Wonders

    Samuel Wrobel 

    You, our supporters, are amazing. But the cliché “we couldn’t do it without you” doesn’t seem to suit. You have been as big a part of what has been achieved through RSPB work, as we have. So much has been accomplished in recent years; you stood with us in 2019’s Youth Climate Strikes, you raised funds to help remove invasive species from Gough Island, and over 100,000…

    • 25 Mar 2021
  • Springtime crafts

    Jenny Tweedie

    Here are some craft ideas to keep you busy during the Easter bank holiday weekend and beyond. We'd love to see your clever crafty creations so please send photos of them to NotesOnNature@rspb.org.uk . We'll feature our favourites in the 17 April edition of our Notes on Nature email newsletter.

    Felted jumper chickens 

    Re-purposing old jumpers as a craft received an unexpected boost this January, after…

    • 24 Mar 2021
  • Bats awake from their long winter slumber

    Jos Ashpole 

    The days are getting longer, daffodils are blooming out in the garden and I’ve been marvelling at the queen bees that are noisily buzzing around the crocuses. At dawn and dusk, the blackbird’s melodic song right outside my window is a powerful reminder that, for nature, spring is very much here.  

    As we say goodbye to winter, we can start to say hello to many of the creatures that spent the long, cold days hibernating…

    • 22 Mar 2021
  • Nature discovery at RSPB Ynys-hir

    Jamie Wyver  

    Here’s a lovely story from RSPB member Barbara Webber. 

      

    “I was pleased to read the Nature’s Home article on Ynys-hir, it took me back 80 years to when my mother and I went for safety from Bristol blitzes, to Aberdyfi and my love of nature began.  


    View from Covert Du hide, Ynys-hir RSPB nature reserve – Jenny Hibburt (rspb-images.com) 

     

    Some days we went up the estuary to the peat areas and collected…

    • 21 Mar 2021
  • Hedge cutting and nesting birds

    Molly Brown

    As spring and summer arrive, spending time outdoors and in our gardens is one of our favourite things to do as a nation. Having our own piece of nature to look after and enjoy is a pleasure for most people, and it allows us to feel a little bit closer to wildlife. Watching a pair of blackbirds hopping on the lawn looking for worms, or being front row at your very own local robin’s concert, is one of the joys…

    • 19 Mar 2021
  • Memoirs of an ancient mariner

    Jamie Wyver

    Over the past year our offices have mostly been closed. That’s meant many of the wonderful letters RSPB members send to us have taken longer than usual to reach the Nature’s Home magazine team. I recently collected a large postbag from RSPB HQ and sat down to read through our mail. It was quite an emotional experience. Members talked about how they’d been supporting us for 50, 60, 70 years. They described…

    • 12 Mar 2021
  • International Women’s Day: A Spotlight on Hens

    Anastasia McKeating, Sian Denney and India James 

    On March 8th, 2021 we celebrate International Women’s Day! Here at the RSPB we think it is important to celebrate women's achievements throughout history, and this year we want to put the spotlight on some of our favourite female birds that are so often overlooked.  

    Over the last year or so, our Wildlife Enquiries Team have had an increasing number of queries asking why it is us…

    • 1 Mar 2021
  • Photo of the week: Spotted! Water rail

    Jen Chandler

    Sometimes described as sounding like a disgruntled squealing piglet. Or perhaps you’ve heard its tired moan and sharp ‘kip’ calls when disturbed, the water rail is a common backdrop to your wetland walk. But how many of us can say we have seen one in the open, or even, photographed one? Well Nature’s Home reader, Anne-Marie Imeson ticked all the boxes. 

    The photo, taken at RSPB Leighton Mos…

    • 22 Feb 2021
  • How has nature helped you? For Trevor Parsons, it may have been a lifeline

    Watching garden birds in your local area, butterflies and bumblebees descend on the flower beds, or simply the sunlight through the trees, has been a welcome break from our locked down dwellings. But when Trevor Parsons, a wildlife and landscape photography from Dorset, experienced his second mental breakdown in 2013, nature really stepped up to the plate. We recently caught up with Trevor to hear about his story and learn how he…

    • 22 Jan 2021
  • Wild windows raise a smile during lockdown

    Laura Sherwood-King

    When lockdown started in March and I found myself on furlough for 4 months I was determined to try and continue making a difference for nature even though I could not actively work or promote our fundraising. After spending some weeks in the garden planting, creating wildlife habitats and getting round to jobs left undone for years I was inspired by the campaign to display teddies in our windows to…

    • 15 Jan 2021
  • Photo of the week: Woodcock in the garden

    Jos Ashpole

    Nature's Home reader Christine Barker sent us this photo of a beautiful woodcock sheltering in her daughter's garden.

    Woodcock - image by Christine Barker

    Christine says: “It spent a little time finding food on the lawn, but mostly kept still, eyes alert, under the bushes. It had flown away by the next morning.”

    Secretive woodland dwellers

    Woodcocks are elusive birds. As you can see from the photo, they have a mottled-brown…

    • 8 Jan 2021
  • Connecting to Nature in Winter

    Anastasia McKeating

    Our nature calendar (pdf download link below) has been created to help you stay connected throughout the next month and beyond, and we would love to hear about your relationship with the natural world and how it changes during winter.

    Working on the RSPB Wildlife Enquiries team, I am privileged to hear so many wonderful stories about peoples’ experiences with nature. Whether they are reporting a sighting…

    • 7 Jan 2021
  • A virtual walk around Swanscombe Peninsula

    Donna Zimmer

    Swanscombe Peninsula in Kent is one of my favourite green spaces. It’s an urban wilderness with an outstanding mosaic of habitats which attracts some rather special species.

    Unfortunately this site is under threat from a Theme Park proposal.

    In autumn, whilst I was out getting my daily allowed exercise, I decided to showcase this area. So I put together this short film (below).

    Relax and enjoy a virtual…

    • 6 Jan 2021