The National Trust is one of the most important organisations in the UK for bluebell conservation. A quarter of the Trust’s woodland is ancient or semi-natural; the ideal habitats for bluebells. Here are six facts you may not know about them:

1. The bluebell has many names: English Bluebell, Wild Hyacinth, Wood Bell, Bell Bottle, Cuckoo’s Boots, Wood Hyacinth, Lady’s Nightcap and Witches’ Thimbles, Hyacinthoides Non-Scripta

2. It is against the law to intentionally pick, uproot or destroy bluebells.

3. If you plant bluebells, you should make sure it’s the English bluebell, not the Spanish version. This is a more vigorous plant and could out-compete our delicate native flower.

4. Almost half the world’s bluebells are found in the UK, they’re relatively rare in the rest of the world.

5. Bluebell colonies take a long time to establish – around 5-7 years from seed to flower.

6. Bluebells can take years to recover after footfall damage. If a bluebell’s leaves are crushed, they die back from lack of food as the leaves cannot photosynthesise.

Extract taken from: The National Trust (UK).

Images by CRUSH Photography© www.crush.photography

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Acknowledgements: Extract taken from The National Trust (UK)

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Fallow Deer

The male fallow deer is known as a buck, the female is a doe, and the young a fawn. They were first brought to Britain from the western Mediterranean during the Roman period, when they were kept within enclosures known as ‘vivaria’.

Variation in Colour

Much variation occurs in the coat colour of the species, with four main variants: common, menil, melanistic, and leucistic. They prefer to graze grasses although they will take trees and dwarf shrub shoots in autumn and winter.

All Images by CRUSH Photography©

Only bucks have antlers, which are broad and shovel-shaped (palmate) from three years. In the first two years, the antler is a single spike. Groups of adult males and females, usually with young, remain apart for most of the year in large woodlands, only coming together to breed.

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Acknowledgements: Extracts from The British Deer Societ more...

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  • Type that saw greatest decline was the painted lady – with a 38.5 per cent drop 
  • Over the last two years, sightings of this species have almost halved 
  • Worrying figures come from BBC Gardeners’ World Magazine’s annual review

The Daily Mail reports today that “sightings of every listed butterfly species in the UK fell last year.

The type that saw the greatest decline was the painted lady – with a 38.5 per cent drop in gardeners spotting them compared with in 2020.

Over the last two years, sightings of this species have almost halved, with only 16 per cent of respondents to a survey stating they had seen one in their garden last year, down from 31 per cent in 2019.

The worrying figures come from BBC Gardeners’ World Magazine’s annual review which asked readers which kinds of butterfly they had seen most regularly in their garden last year”.

To read more of this article click on the following link – Daily Mail

Images in this blog were taken by CRUSH Photography©

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Acknowledgements: Extract taken from the Daily Mail new more...

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Although the Eurasian Jay is the most colourful member of the crow family, jays are actually quite difficult to see. They are shy woodland birds, rarely moving far from cover. The screaming call usually lets you know a jay is nearby and it is usually given when a bird is on the move, so watch for a bird flying between the trees with its distinctive flash of white on the rump. Jays are famous for their acorn feeding habits and in the autumn you may see them burying acorns for retrieving later in the winter.

You can find jay across most of the UK, except northern Scotland. Lives in both deciduous and coniferous woodland, parks and mature gardens. Likes oak trees in autumn when there are plenty of acorns. Often seen flying across a woodland glade giving its screeching call, it becomes more obvious in autumn when it may fly some distance in the open in search of acorns.

‘Eurasian Jay’

They are resident in the UK all year round apart from northern areas of Scotland and the west coast of Ireland, altogether numbering approximately 170,000 breeding pairs (RSPB). Over winter, due to harsher winters and lower stocks of acorns, Jays do sometimes appear in the UK from northern Europe in “irruptions”, or sudden bursts of large flocks.

Jays nest and breed in large shrubs, laying typically between 4 – 6 eggs that have an incubation period of approximately 16 – 19 days. Both male and female Jays feed the young.

All Images by CRUSH Photography©

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Acknowledgements: Extracts taken from 'Garden Bird' and more...

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