State of Nature 2019

Cuckkoo by Jon Hawkins - Surrey Hills Photography

With the release of the State of Nature report 2019, Colin explores what we can all do to help nature...

With the publication this week of the 2019 State of Nature Report we are all reminded of the precarious position of wildlife in the UK and globally. Whilst the UK’s wildlife is the most studied in the world, the UK remains one of the most nature-depleted countries, with 1 in 7 species at threat of extinction.

Thankfully, 2019 has also been a year of optimism, the year in which young people have led the way in promoting action for the environment as the only way to a brighter, sustained future for people and nature. There is also cause for some cautious hope, as the report showcases a wide range of exciting conservation initiatives where species such as bittern and the large blue butterfly have been saved through the concerted efforts of organisations and individuals.

the UK remains one of the most nature-depleted countries, with 1 in 7 species at threat of extinction.

Worcestershire reflects the national and global trends – generally there are fewer numbers of fewer species in fewer places – when did you last see a water vole or did you hear a cuckoo this spring? On the other hand, there are many great initiatives involving Worcestershire Wildlife Trust - to encourage curlews and other wildlife on the river Severn, to make space for pollinators and other insects in Worcester and other urban areas, the re-creation of heathland on farmland and an abandoned golf course near Kidderminster.

Nature is in big trouble but we know how to bring it back. Local action is already making a real difference and now the government needs to play its part. We need a Nature Recovery Network established in law – one that is locally developed and nationally connected – that would help join up our last remaining wild places by creating vital new habitats. It’s time to make nature a normal part of childhood again and restore wildlife so it can recover and thrive across urban jungles and the countryside once more – where it can be part of people’s daily lives.

there are fewer numbers of fewer species in fewer places

I think most people will agree that if this report is to really make a difference, its legacy must not as a catalogue of the data and the trends, which really confirm what most people knew or suspected anyway, but instead how we now respond as a nation, as conservationists, as farmers, as local communities, to take action.

Read the State of Nature report