As the spring heads inexorably towards summer the natural world becomes more and more frenetic. More flower buds bloom, tree blossom and birds busily rear their broods.
At this time of year insects are also much more in evidence, from bees collecting pollen whilst pollinating the next crop of fruits and seeds, butterflies laying eggs to start the next cycle of caterpillar transformation or brilliantly coloured damselflies quartering their prey.
Insects are often the building block on which the success of other species depend. They pollinate three quarters of our food crops, as well as being the main food source for many birds, small mammals and fish. It is no coincidence that much loved birds such as swallows and swifts arrive on our shores at the time that insect populations start to reach their peak. As well as birds such as swifts which feed on flying insects, most birds, even seed eaters usually require a healthy crop of insects or caterpillars to feed to their young.
Shockingly, insects are dying out up to eight times faster than larger animals and 41% of insect species face extinction. This is a massive cause for concern and it impacts us all as well as all wildlife. Loss of their habitat and overuse of pesticides are two of the major causes of this looming catastrophe.
However, the good news is that it’s not too late to act. Insect populations can recover, and we know what needs to be done to save them. By working together we can change the future of insects, starting right now. Here at Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust we’re working with farmers to tackle pesticide pollution and helping them make their land more welcoming for pollinators and by taking our pledge to take two simple actions in your home or outside space you can really make a difference.
If you want to take action to save the most important creatures on the planet before it’s too late sign up for our free Action for Insects guide with all the information and support you need to start helping insects where you live. You’ll receive information and tips on insect-friendly gardening, going chemical-free and the small actions you can take that will really make a difference to insects. Sign up for you free guide at wildlifetrusts.org/take-action-insects
As well as taking action for insects don’t forget that June sees the return of our amazing 30 Days Wild initiative. Now more than ever it’s essential that we stay connected to nature and 30 Days Wild is the perfect way to do this! We can’t wait to get started so why not sign up for your free pack and join in? For details visit nottinghamshirewildlife.org/30dayswild.
Photos © Darin Smith, Gee White and Tim Sexton