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New technology and the increase in noise pollution

Monday, May 15, 2017

The Guardian recently published an article called “Turn it off: how technology is killing the joy of national parks”. The article made a valid point that the increase in drones, or UAVs (Unmanned Aerial Vehicles), and other technology such as smartphones and music speakers, is spoiling the natural sound of some of the USA’s otherwise peaceful places. Read More

Local dormouse monitoring continues

Tuesday, May 02, 2017

As relaxation and to help the endangered dormouse population, our ecologists have enjoyed a busman’s holiday. On Sunday we checked our local dormouse boxes, as part of the National Dormouse Monitoring Programme (NDMP). The programme has been set up to monitor dormouse boxes in 350 locations around Britain. Thomson Ecology monitors 50 dormouse boxes in an area of woodland in Merrow, Surrey.  Read More

Small changes can make a big difference

Tuesday, April 04, 2017

I read an article recently about a 40% drop in the number of plastic bags on beaches compared with 2015, attributed to the introduction of the 5p charge on plastic bags. It’s funny how such a small charge can make such a big difference. People were initially outraged by the introduction, but they now accept this change and have changed their habits as a result.  Read More

Volunteer required?

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

The birds are singing, the bees are out and about, and this morning I saw my first slug searching for the newly sprouted greens in my garden. This can only mean one thing – the season has kicked in.  Read More

Can development ever be good for nature?

Thursday, February 23, 2017

I confess that in my younger days I was an idealist, believing that all development had to be stopped to save the world. Now, much longer in tooth, and wiser (I hope), I realise that a considerably more pragmatic approach is required. I am still passionate about nature and wildlife but recognise that new housing is needed to accommodate the UK’s ever growing population and along with that comes the associated new infrastructure – bigger roads and faster rail.  Read More

The Large Blue Butterfly makes a comeback

Thursday, February 16, 2017

A rare and enigmatic species, the large blue butterfly is one of two insects to be awarded European Protected Species status in the UK. The large blue has always been elusive, and even disappeared from UK shores in the late 1970s. However, the species was successfully reintroduced in a number of sites in south-west England and it is steadily increasing as reported in The State of the UK’s Butterfly 2015 report, published by the charity Butterfly Conservation. Read More

An unlikely ally

Tuesday, February 07, 2017

In the constant battle of survival that dominates the natural world an unlikely ally has come to the aid of the red squirrel - the pine marten. Pine martens are native to the UK and most of Europe, hunting both on the ground and in the trees. However, due to extensive woodland clearance and human persecution, the range of the pine marten has been dramatically reduced. Apart from small populations in Wales and northern England, the Scottish Highlands is their last real stronghold in the UK.  Read More

Help for hedgehogs

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

European hedgehogs (Erinaceus europaeus) have declined by 97 per cent in Britain over the last 70 years, from 35 million in the 1950s to just under one million today.  Read More

Snap happy!

Monday, January 23, 2017

With the miniaturisation of electronics the camera trap has become an excellent survey technique, a 24 hour night or day recording service that can be used in its own right as a survey method or to supplement survey techniques in a variety of situations. The ultimate aim is to improve the accuracy of biological recording on a site in one, or multiple locations.  Read More

Discovering dormice

Monday, January 16, 2017

The third weekend in November marked the last dormouse nestbox checks of the year for the National Dormouse Monitoring Programme (NDMP). As the nights drew in and the frosts appeared, dormice, along with many other animals, started to hibernate. The NDMP will begin again in March with a spring clean of the nesting boxes.  Read More