World Wildlife Day (3rd March) is a day to celebrate what makes this world so diverse and beautiful. It also reminds us to keep stepping up for wildlife and doing things to work in harmony with nature, rather than exploiting it.
We’ve rounded up some simple actions you can do TODAY to help nature thrive near you.
The UK's butterflies are in trouble. Climate change and habitat destruction are the two main contributors. Data shows that since 1976, "habitat specialist" butterflies (the ones that tend not to fly far from their favoured landscapes, such as heathland or chalkland) havedeclined by 77%.
"Wider countryside" species (the ones that are better able to move around and adapt to different environments) havedeclined by 46% over the same period.
Give them a helping hand by creating these colourfulbutterfly feeders from recycled materials. You can also help by growing long grass and leaving fallen fruit under trees for them to feed on. Thistles and stinging nettles are important to butterflies; their larvae depend on them to feed and grow, so don’t be in a hurry to clear them.
Many populations of our once-common amphibian species are in decline. The common frog and natterjack toad have been in decline since the 1970s. Even common toad populations have dropped across the UK by 68% over the past 30 years. You can help amphibians by creating a wildlife water feature. Amphibians can use it to spawn in, while other animals can use it to cool down and keep hydrated.See our step-by-step guide here.
As well as not looking particularly nice, litter is dangerous for wildlife. Over eight million individual pieces of marine litter enter the sea every day, with some ending up on beaches. Animals can become entangled in this rubbish, while others eat it or collect it to build their nests. Going on a beach clean is one of the best ways to help remove this dangerous pollution, making beaches safer for people and wildlife. See ourbeach clean top tips here.
Attract birds to your garden by making them a fantastic feast! Ourfruit and cereal bird feedersare a great way to use up leftover scraps and help birds during the colder months. If you like getting sticky, have a go at ourpinecone bird feeders, too.
In the 1950s, 30 million hedgehogs roamed the British countryside. Now, there are perhaps just one million left – a 97% loss. You can help by making your garden more ’hog friendly. A single hedgehog travels 1-2km a night in search of food, so by putting a hole in your garden fence or shrubs, you’re joining up habitats for hedgehogs to do this. Hedgehogs love piles of leaf litter, too. We’ve also put a guide together on making your own hedgehog home.
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This month, have some messy fun creating forest faces!
This is a perfect activity to celebrate International Mud Day on 29th June!