An Introduction

I started this blog on January 1st, but as from today I’m blogging as a “Local Patch Reporter” for BBC Wildlife magazine. I’ll be documenting my wildlife sightings throughout the year, in my local patch which is in East Yorkshire. I’m based on the flat Plain of York, in a small village to the east of the city. It’s an area of intensive arable farming – East Yorkshire is one of the least wooded counties in England. In spite of this, it’s full of wildlife if you know where to look. I hope to be watching badgers and foxes, brown hares, water voles and maybe even an otter in the coming months.

I regularly take part in, and sometimes lead, conservation volunteering work days for Yorkshire Wildlife Trust. They are a great opportunity to spend a day in a nature reserve, amongst people with a common interest. We help to maintain these reserves and keep them great for wildlife. We cut back scrub, clear invasive plants, plant trees and repair fences and boardwalks. It’s very rewarding to see you’ve made a difference at the end of the day. Sometimes it takes months or even years to see the full benefit, but it’s all the more rewarding for that.

I often find out about wildlife that interests me from these work days and return another day with the camera – perhaps to photograph a grass snake, a water vole or a kingfisher. I may leave a camera trap, to see what comes along a woodland path – fox, badger or roe deer perhaps.

The Plain of York, from Givendale


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