The UK Government’s deregulation agenda is dangerous and puts the most basic laws protecting wildlife at risk. The first prong of their three-part attack was setting out plans to amend or scrap crucial environmental laws like the Habitat Regulations. This would be devastating news on its own, but further announcements of the intention of creating a minimum of 38 ‘Investment Zones’ and reviewing plans to support the new Environmental Land Management Schemes (ELMS) were also announced.
I encourage you to read as much as you can about the subject and then get in touch with your local councillor and MP. These are unprecedented times, if there was ever a time to raise your voice and shout that this isn’t good enough it’s now! This is my letter.
Here in the UK snowdrops can be seen transforming woodlands, verges and banks. While they are a much-loved icon of spring, it can be surprising to find out that these dainty flowers have rather powerful therapeutic abilities.
Kelp forests line about a quarter of the worlds cold and temperate coastlines, thriving in cold, nutrient-rich waters. These coastal habitats support a surprising diversity of sea life and are one of the oceans most diverse ecosystems according to Oceana, but there is more to these underappreciated ecosystems than meets the eye.
Here in the UK, the weather has warmed up and spring has arrived. Daffodils and crocuses have bloomed, lambs have been bouncing around the fields, and tadpoles can be seen in the ponds. The metamorphosis of tadpoles into froglets is a spectacular transformation during which almost every organ is subject to modification, and it’s this process we’ll be diving into in this article.
“The living world cannot operate without a healthy ocean, and neither can we”
This is a sentiment evidently shared by the 14 countries of the Ocean Panel, who announced ambitious plans to sustainably manage 100% of the oceans under their national jurisdictions by 2025. This announcement comes at a pivotal moment in the climate crisis and is a welcome spark of hope and positive news for measurable change.
Rewilding is a movement where efforts are concentrated on restoring the landscapes natural processes, eventually trying to create ecosystems that don’t require as much human management and giving space for nature to thrive on its own. Part of the rewilding process is to reintroduce key species that can help restore a more stable ecosystem. 2020 has seen some fantastic reintroduction projects with many more planned for the new year, and I wanted to take a moment to highlight some of the remarkable stories in the UK and those to look forward to in the years to come.
As summer gives way to autumn, it brings beautiful displays of colour. Leaves change from shades of green to hues of yellow, oranges, reds, and purples, but what causes this colour change, and what causes them to fall?
On a remote volcanic island in the middle of the South Atlantic ocean, a familiar yet alien isopod calls St Helena home. The bright yellow colour and spikes are not the only remarkable things about these woodlice, they also glow under UV light!
As the temperatures warmed and plants began to bloom in the UK, it coincides as it always does with the awakening of the bees. As I watched them fly from flower to flower and get dusted with pollen, I noticed what looked like little saddlebags on their hind legs. Curious, I began researching more on these little pollinators and as I did so this post grew from a relatively short dive about the bags (called corbiculae) and into a deep dive on “bee bread”, how honey is made, what they use it for, and more.
Sea anemones are often overlooked, seen as the pretty but uninteresting sidekick for the clownfish that waft around in the currents not doing a lot… but in reality sea anemones are not to be underestimated. From willingly tearing themselves in half repeatedly to form a clone army, to detaching from the sea floor and swimming around and forming clever mutualistic partnerships, sea anemones have a lot more to them than initially meets the eye.