• Wildlife Gift Ideas - Plants, Trees, Fungi and Botany

    I often get emails asking me what books or equipment I would recommend and so with Christmas on the way I thought it would be a good time to put a few blog posts together with some of my favourites.  This blog will concentrate on plants, trees, fungi and botany but look out for future posts on birds, mammals and other cool stuff coming soon. The Wild Flower Key (Revised Edition) - How to identify wild plants, trees and shrubs in Britain and Ireland I’ve always loved this book by Francis Rose and the updated version by Clare O’Reilly holds... read more

  • Wildlife Identification - Sometimes it's OK not to know...

    One of the most common comments I get during our trips and tours is “If you weren’t here we wouldn’t have known what that bird/mammal/insect/plant was.” Comments like this are very gratifying and it’s great for me otherwise I’d be out of a job, but it got me thinking – does it actually matter if we don’t know what we are looking at? Now I may be shooting myself in the proverbial foot here, but I’d suggest that sometimes it doesn’t! Vaguer Waders? Natural history, ecology and taxonomy have a long history of finding and identifying creatures down to species level. This... read more

  • Budby Forest South in Autumn

    Another unseasonally warm day today as we headed off to Budby Common and Budby Forest South. Not a lot of bird or mammal activity around today save for a few jays busily flying across the heathland, stashing acorns for the winter to come. We were also treated to a "snow storm" of long-tailed tits, that descended like frantic snowflakes from the tree canopy while we were sat having a break. The autumn colours are really in full swing now and many of the trees were dropping leaves in the slightest of breezes. Sycamore in Autumn   The beech woodland was looking... read more

  • Autumn Fungi

      With all the wet weather (again) recently it's easy to think that most of the wildlife will be hoping for better weather soon. However,  one group that thrives in these conditions are fungi. Fungi aren't plants, they have their very own kingdom instead and it's currently thought that there are about 4,000 species in the UK. Commonly people call edible fungi mushrooms and poisonous ones toadstools. Honey fungus - destroyer of trees   The part of the fungi that you see above ground is the fruiting body from which they reproduce by producing spores. Although... read more

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