“So… can we farm for wildlife now, please?”

This blog is titled so as it pretty much sums up how a conversation with my dad a few months ago, to get the sustainable agricultural ball rolling at Claypit hall. I have lived on this farm for the 22 and 3/4 years that I have existed, and largely speaking I wouldn’t change it for…

Wandering through Wildflowers

Increasingly we are finding wildflower margins nurtured throughout intensively farmed arable land, to help wildlife thrive within the agri-environment schemes. These margins are coming to the end of their flowering period, but up until now they have provided a haven for pollinators all season. Different plants provide different resources, and this can be exploited through…

Finding a love for weeds in Butterfly paradise

Butterflies are known to be pretty scarce across east Anglian farmland, and this makes sense given the vast expanses of cereals that grow across most of it and the fact that 70% of butterfly species are in decline in the UK anyway. Of course, that doesn’t have to be the case, and where wild flowering…

A Party with the Nightjars

This week I managed to sacrifice a few too many hours sleep to come and see the Nightjars up at Nottingham. Thankfully, and as expected, the evening was worth every missing wink. It was an evening filled with chicks, churrs and a batman-esque fight between two very frisky males – an event that had to be…

Cereals 2017

This month has been a baptism by fire in my new job as assistant manager at RSPB’s Hope Farm in Cambridgeshire. My first week working full time at the farm, following finishing my masters degree, and we were off to the Cereals 2017 event in Lincolnshire. This is one of the biggest events in agriculture,…

My first sighting of heron chicks at the nest!

I shall not say too much because my giddy excitement in the video says it all. All I will say is that this was my genuine first sighting of heron chicks, completely unexpected so early, and completely over the moon on a sunny afternoon. Please excuse the camera skills!

Mimicking a Lab Rat

It is becoming more and more apparent in conservation that we need a good understanding of translocation biology, and my research is working on just that. This is the moving of individuals of a species either between populations in the wild or from captivity into wild populations to boost genetic diversity. Where isolated populations have depleted…

Savouring Every Last Drop

Everybody has noticed more hours of light in the first week of March, and with more hours of beautiful sun comes a new urged desire to spend as much time enjoying it as possible. The air has a new and fresh scent, and the light that greets you as you walk out the door has…

Waxwing lyrical

The past few weeks have been busy, full of murmuring clues to say I’ve nearly finished university, apparently ready to embark on the next chapter of my life. Unfortunately, there has been something quite wrong about February, though. I have spent most of it inside. Many hours have been consumed by my thesis project, hunched…

WEEK 4 AND 5 SIGHTINGS

These past two weeks I have been spoilt, yet again, for sightings of more exciting birds around Nottinghamshire. A fantastic, bright morning out ringing last Sunday, and a dusky afternoon around Attenborough gave nothing short of a treat in my bird count of 2017. Whilst out ringing, the new sightings of a Marsh and Coal…

WEEK 3 SIGHTINGS

Well, this week has been a real treat for me in the bird world! A mini marathon biking to three nature parks in three days ensured my heart was full of nature fancies, and I certainly have felt all the better for it. Cloudy days? Drizzly rain? Ice biting cold? It doesn’t matter, January’s wildlife…

An evening with Nick Baker and the Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust

Thank you Nick Baker and the Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust for hosting an evening to discuss the state of nature in the UK – it was phenomenal. Having grown up to Nick enthusing my childhood with wildlife on TV, it was so satisfying to see that he was just as inspiring and encapsulating in real life….