Here in the Yorkshire Dales we are blessed with a rich heritage of natural flora and fauna, as well as a stunningly beautiful place to live and work. However, if we’d like to keep it that way, we probably all need to do as much as we can to protect our wildlife.
Most people should be aware that bee populations worldwide have been declining at an alarming rate in recent years. I wonder though how many people realise that Britain’s bees have been declining more rapidly than anywhere else in Europe, or that we rely upon them to pollinate around 70% of all our food? We would literally starve without them! And, it isn’t just bees that are disappearing rapidly. In the 1950’s it was estimated that more than 35 million hedgehogs roamed the British countryside. By the mid 1990’s this had become an estimated 1.5 million, and now just 1 million, a few short years later. It’s a similar story in the bird world, with populations of song thrushes and house sparrows halving in the past quarter century.
So what can we do to help?
Almost 20% of the urban land in this country is made up of private gardens, and we can all make these as wildlife friendly as we want them to be. From a humble bird box, through to an all singing all dancing insect hotel we can all accommodate something; and anything, in this case, is infinitely better than nothing.