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  1. It’s National Insect Week from 18 to 24 June 2018.   And the National Insect Week Photography Competition has been launched, so this is a great time to get outdoors and get snapping!

    The competition closes to entries on 31 October 2018, and there are some great tips on  photographing insects on the National Insect Week’s website.

    There are two categories – under 18s and over 18s.  And you can find the rules of the competition and privacy policy on their website.

    The aim of National Insect Week is to encourage people of all ages to discover more about insects.

    It runs every two years and it’s organized by the Royal Entomological Society, together with a number of partner organisations which have an interest in the science, natural history and conservation of insects.

    Crawl off to the National Insect Week’s website to discover more about it

    Snap here to get info on the photography competition.  Good luck!




  2. There are some amazing nature programmes on television these days, and one to watch is The Super Squirrels on BBC2 this evening on Tuesday 19 June 2018!

    The programme puts these amazing animals' abilities to the test, seeing what their problem solving skills are like with a specially designed assault course!

    Narrated by Olivia Coleman, the programme shows us squirrels who live underground, squirrels who can talk and those who can outsmart a rattlesnake.

    And who can fail to be moved by little squirrel orphan Billy who is just 5 days old when the programme meets him?

    Want to help red squirrels?  Adopt a Red Squirrel from the Scottish Wildlife Trust

    Adopt a Red Squirrel

    ©Ronnie Stokes

    And there's more information on helping with red squirrel conservation here.


  3. I've just been taking a look at Suttons website - we got a fabulous vegetable trug from them a couple of years ago and it's been a great buy, so from time to time I like to take a look at it to see what they've got.

    One thing I discovered tonight which would be of interest to anyone who wants to start attracting butterflies and/or bees to their garden is that they have an offer on at the moment on their Solitary Bee Hive - you can enjoy 33% off.  

    Solitary Bee Hive from Suttons Seeds
    Solitary Bee Hive from Suttons
    just £19.99 instead of £29.99 saving you 33%

    They've also got an offer on a Buttefly Habitat which you can buy for £19.99, saving you 20%...

    Butterfly Habitat from Suttons Seeds
    Butterfly Habitat from Suttons
    Was £24.99, now £19.00 saving you 20%

    They've also got some great wildlife attracting plants so you can encourage bees and butterflies in your garden.

    Fly away to Suttons to take a peek! 

  4. The 6th May is International Dawn Chorus Day.   

    The 6th May is International Dawn Chorus Day

    ©Garden Bird

    Garden Bird has the story of how International Dawn Chorus Day started;   apparently broadcaster and environmentalist Chris Bains had a birthday party at 4 in the morning so that they could all enjoy the dawn chorus. 

    And now there are events all over the UK and all over the world to celebrate International Dawn Chorus Day - you can find events here.

    Set those alarm clocks and get ready to enjoy the orchestra of nature and all her music!

    Click here to fly off to Garden Bird to find out more

  5. It's National Gardening Week from 30th April to 6th May and thus a great opportunity to raise awareness of how we  can all help save bees.  

    Suttons Seeds have the answer:

    Wildflower Seeds from Suttons Seeds

    They've got a range of wildflower seeds, from Cottage Gardens to Shady areas, so there's plenty of choice and as well as helping bees, you'll add plenty of colour to your garden!

    Click here to fly away to Suttons Seeds and see their Seeds for bees


  6. Countryfile Live takes place from 2 – 5 August 2018 at Blenheim Palace in Oxfordshire.

    There’s a great deal to see and do at this event.  The website is live and up and running but it’s worth coming back to visit for updates.

    The Shire Horse Society is returning so you’ll be able to get up close to the massive strength of 25 Shire horses and watch them test their pulling power in the arena.  Visit the Equine Village page for more information.

    Enjoy the majestic Shire Horse Society at Countryfile Live
    ©Countryfile Live

    There’s a pop up nature reserve, full of hints, tips and hands on help for anyone who wants to discover all about wildlife and caring for them.  Peer into a working beehive, watch honey being produced and find out how wax candles are made.  There’s skep-making, building a bug hotel and making a nest-box. Fly off here for more details

    Go wild in the Wildlife Zone©Countryfile Live

    Meet some of the animals on Adam Henson’s farm – he’s a presenter from Countryfile.  His prize bull Archie will be there, plus some of his rare breeds, and in the Animal Petting Barn, kids can get close up to chicks, rabbits and cuddly kid goats.

    Meet some of the animals of Adam Henson's farm©Countryfile Live

    Where do the meat, fish, dairy products, fruit and vegetables come from? Find out all about the traditional and modern farming methods and trace the journey of the food we eat every day to its source.

    Discover all about modern and traditional farming methods
    ©Countryfile Live

    And for dog lovers, there’s a Dog Lovers’ Arena, with incredible shows of tricks, agility and skill.   Working gun dogs and sheep dogs will be among the line up, and the Kennel Club will show the skills and agility of their dogs too.

    Stop by the Dog Lovers Arena©Countryfile Live

    Of course there’s lots more besides – there’s music, eats, drinks and shopping (tons of shopping), 50 Things to do before you’re 11 and ¾ (you can do a few of them at the event), a Great British Craft Marquee, the Countryfile Kitchen Marquee (my mouth is watering already),

    Can I bring my dog?

    The show says:

    Yes, although we ask that you remain as considerate as possible to your fellow visitors who may not love your dog as much as you, and that you keep them under control. Please ensure you bring bags to dispose of your dog’s waste.  Dogs must be kept on a lead at all times. A maximum of two dogs per person is allowed. Guide assistance and support dogs are welcome at the event.

    Obviously please do NOT leave your dog in the car.  

    There’s a gorgeous website which is very helpful with lots of FAQs, essential information, tickets, details about the attractions and sponsors and a Contact Us page.

    The sponsors are Quilter Cheviot Investment Management in association with the National Trust, and more besides, and there’s also a photography competition Cheviot Quilter are sponsoring you may like to check out – closing date is 30 June 2018.

    Click here to go to the Countryfile Live website


  7. I've just found this on You Tube and wanted to share it with you.   It's wonderful to see such a rescue taking place.  Thank you to Majestic Tuskers for sharing it with us all. 

    Thank you too to everyone in Kerela, India, for helping this baby elephant get out, and thank you to all the other elephants for your salute. 

    You can find a list of animal charities in India here

  8. A lot has been written about the benefits of gardening but what happens for people who have disabilities, ill health or who are disadvantaged, vulnerable or isolated?

    Well, there’s an amazing charity called Thrive.   They use gardening to bring about positive changes through social and therapeutic horticulture.

    They help people work with plants to improve their physical and psychological health, as well as communication and thinking skills.

    Gardens are very restful places to be in terms of the peace and quiet they offer people seeking recovery.                                                            

    Thrive is always looking for volunteers to help

    Visit Thrive’s website to find out more. 


  9. I've just checked the TV pages and there's a programme on BBC2 tonight, Thursday 26 April 2018, at 8pm.

    Called Super Fast Falcon it shows the secrets of the peregrine falcon - which is the fastest animal on earth.  Peregrine Falcons can reach speeds of over 200 mph!

    Watch the birds at work in the Lake District and the Alps.  The breeder tests his birds' eyesight, speed and pursuit of moving targets. 

    Moses the Peregrine Falcon reached speeds of over 100 miles in 2 seconds.   

    The programme also tells the story of three falcon chicks growing up on a balcony in Chicago.   Visit the Chicago Peregrine Program's Facebook page here

    Click here to fly away to BBC2 to watch!  (You need a TV licence to watch it, though)

    Want to try a falconry experience?  Visit Into the Blue to treat yourself!Want to try a falconry experience?  Visit Into the Blue to treat yourself!


  10. The 27th April is World Tapir Day each year. 

    Not much is known about the tapir, so here's a short video showing one:

    And here are 10 facts about tapirs for you...

    1. There are 4 recognised species of extant tapir – 3 of these are in Central and South America, and one in Southeast Asia.
    2. Tapirs have been around far longer than we have.   Their ancestors have been around for 35 million years!  So tapirs are often called “living fossils”!
    3. The tapir is known as the gardener of the forest because they are so good at dispersing seeds from the fruit they eat.
    4. Tapirs live in jungles, grasslands, swamps and cloud forests.
    5. You can meet tapirs at a number of wildlife parks in the UK with a tapir experience
    6. The tapir’s nose is flexible, which is good for snuffling around on the ground for food
    7. Tapirs are pregnant for over a year and produce one offspring at a time
    8. Tapirs are most closely related to horses and rhinos – in Indonesia, the animal is called badak, which is the same word as rhino
    9. They can dive to the bottom of watering holes to eat the vegetation there
    10. World Tapir Day looks to raise awareness of tapir conservation and also to raise funds to protect or buy habitat for the tapirs.

    Visit World Tapir Day's website here