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A guide to the wildlife and nature reserves of the UK.


Wildlife and bird watching in the UK

You don't need to go far to see some great wildlife, there is some near you. There are very well known sites across the UK, National Parks, National nature reserves, RSPB reserves and WWT (Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust) reserves, but there are many other great wildlife spots all over the place. Every county has a wildlife trust that will run a series of local reserves, county councils have their own nature reserves and there are plenty of other places where there is ample wildlife.

We will point you in the direction of all the best sites in any given area, though we have no doubt that there are plenty we don't know about (please let us know by emailing us about anywhere that you can recommend).

For information and recommendations on whale and dolphin watching in the UK.
Read about Damselflies and Dragonflies in the UK.

Region by region

old_images/b/beaver-swt1 Scottish beaver trial – Beaver disappears after shots heard
After the first week, one adult female disappeared; the time of her disappearance coincided with unauthorized shooting heard in the same area. There has been no sign of the animal since and the matter has been reported to the local police for further investigation.
Read more »

Top wildlife and bird watching in the South East



Lorraine Kelly launches the 'Wild about gardens' campaign in conjunction with the Royal Horticultural Society and the UK Wildlife Trusts. More.

Plants recommended for a wildlife garden

The RSPB and RHS have got together to create a list of plants recommended for wildlife gardening.
See the full list.

The Book of Shells

We've all picked up a shell or two on the beach, but outside the very most common ones, we have no idea what we are handling. The glorious 652 page book will be able to answer that question for you, no matter where in the world you are. 
Read full review »     

British Moth ID


British Moths and Butterflies - A photographic guide

The book covers 1420 species of moth, 850 macros and 500 micros, as well as 314 caterpillars, pupae and eggs and 74 butterflies.
Read full review »

Why is Herefordshire ignored by national conservation bodies? RSPB, we need you.

There are no RSPB reserves, no WWT reserves, and no National Parks. To my surprise, I have discovered that there are 3 National Nature Reserves in Herefordshire, covering just 200 hectares between them, but 2 of them are permanently closed to the public.

Why is Herefordshire ignored by national conservation bodies? RSPB, we need you. 


Where to Watch Birds in Britain - Second edition

The familiar format contains 34 new sites, giving a total of 454, now including 5 sites on the Isle of Wight. Each site now has a grid reference to aid those of you who are GPS dependent, and there is also a list of 100 birds you might want to see and the best places to see them.
Read full review »

Great British Marine Animals - 3rd Edition

Many people think of the waters around Great Britain as cold, grey and fairly lifeless. This book will put you right (though noone can argue about the water temperature).
Read full review »

Britain's butterflies

Comprehensive photo field guide to the butterflies of Britain.

Click Britain's Butterflies to find out more.



This isn't just a guide to British butterflies, it is a lot more. Matthew Oates is the National Trust's, and one of Britain's, leading experts. He fell in love with butterflies, and particularly the purple emperor, at an early age, and has been following them all around Britain ever since.

Highly recommended. 

Read full review »

Garden wildlife photos

Having taken 2-3 photos, I walked back towards the office, but just before I reached the door, I notice something buzzing around in front of the flowers. The buzz was actually the hum of the very distinctive Hummingbird Hawkmoth, the first we have seen here. 

A top 10 minutes. 


Studying butterflies & moths

As the weather (eventually) warms up in spring, and the butterflies start to appear, how do we get youngsters more interested in the wildlife around us?
Read full review »

Where to see glow worms in the UK

Once far more widespread than they are today, glow-worms have cast a spell over humans for centuries. Shakespeare mentions them in Hamlet and their soft glow on mid-summer nights must have seemed like a scene from a magical world.

Britain's day-flying moths

reviews/2013/day_flying_mothsWhat is the difference between butterflies and moths? A much asked question and there are some specific differences (shape of antennae, position of wings at rest, though, as ever, there are exceptions to this rule.) but more and more people are now beginning to think WHO CARES?

One of the main reasons for differentiating between the two, as far as I am concerned, is that there are just 56 butterflies that occur in the UK, whereas some 2,500 moths have been recorded here. If you want to study and collect, 56 is a vastly more manageable number.

Read full review »