In June, we’ve enjoyed the luscious green of the trees, colourful wildflowers garlands on hedgerows and the noise of fledgling birds. The long days and short nights of June make the outdoors ever more accessible and offer an ideal opportunity to do something wild every day – not only is this fun, but also it can be a benefit for our health and wellbeing. Especially in these uncertain times, enjoying nature and time outside has shown to be ever more important for all of us.
It’s no surprise that here at Avon Wildlife Trust June is the month we encourage nature lovers to get outside and explore the natural world around them as part of our inspiring 30 Days Wild challenge. This year in Avon, we’ve had over 3,000 people take part in 30 Days Wild with us – that’s almost double what we had in the years before. But as we near the end of the month, what can we do to #StayWild? Nature and its many benefits don’t disappear as we progress into July and August. Far from it in fact as in many respects things actually get better as the year progresses into the full bloom of summer.
Visit our reserves and ID butterflies
Many of our native species of butterfly don’t emerge and become active until the summer months with common meadow species such as the gatekeeper, meadow brown and the marbled white often around in huge numbers on many of our nature reserves including many of our reserves in the Gordano Valley, on the Mendips and Bennet’s Patch and White Paddock on the Portway near Bristol. If you want the chance to see something a little less common then the wall browns and chalkhill blues will be active on warm sunny days and may just display for you at our wonderful coastal reserve at Walborough on the Severn Estuary. Visiting one of our reserves can be a wonderful way to spot some of these amazing species of butterflies and other summer wildlife. Find out more about our reserves here.
Plant wildlfowers for our pollinators
Many of our grassland wildflowers are at their best into July and August acting as a critical nectar source for many insects including hoverflies, bumblebees, moths and butterflies. The insects in turn act as pollinators to ensure the continued success of our native wildflowers. Another great summer activity, is gardening and planting wildflowers for all of our busy pollinators. Though spring is better, it’s never too late to add wildflowers to your garden or on your windowsill which will act as a nectar bar for insects. As they travel from flower to flower for nectar, they also pollinate them, enabling them to set seed or bear fruit. So, setting up a nectar bar benefits both your plants and you, allowing you to enjoy the flitting and fluttering of beautiful butterflies and the buzz of other insects. Why not have a look at our Grow Wilder nursery shop, or come along to one of their Saturday open days: growwilder.co.uk
To celebrate the end of 30 Days Wild and as part of National Insect Week, you could pledge to take action for insects with us and other Wildlife Trusts around the country. We know that insects are amazing but 41% of insect species are facing extinction. The loss of their habitats and overuse of pesticides are two major reasons why these little creatures are dying out eight times faster than large mammals. However, it’s not too late and with your help, we can put insects into recovery. By working together, we can change the future of insects. Take action for insects today to receive a free guide with lots of information and tips of how you can make small changes in your home, lifestyle and even your community.