Out and About

Counting birds with RSPB Arne

THE Big Garden Bird Watch, organised by the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds is the world’s largest wildlife survey. This year it takes place over the weekend of Saturday 25th and Sunday 26th January, and there is an invitation to join staff and volunteers at the RSPB’s Arne reserve on Poole Harbour to…

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Look out for raptors at Arne

ON Wednesdays in January, the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB) is hosting raptor roost watches, a chance for the public to take part in dusk walks on the lookout for kestrels, merlins, short-eared owls, marsh harriers and even the elusive hen harrier, one of the most endangered birds of prey in the…

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Dorset Wildlife Trust in January

JANUARY events with Dorset Wildlife Trust include three of the popular Brownsea Bird Boat trips to the island and around Poole Harbour. For details of volunteering opportunities with the conservation charity, visit www.dorsetwildlifetrust.org.uk/things-do/volunteering Sunday 26th – Brownsea Bird Boats, 9am to 1pm, joint event run by DWT, National Trust and the RSPB; landing on Brownsea Island…

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Dark skies over Cranborne Chase AONB

CRANBORNE Chase Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty has officially become an International Dark Sky Reserve – the first AONB to receive this formal designation and only the 14th reserve across the globe. The Chase, which extends from Dorset into Wiltshire, Hampshire and a small area in Somerset, joins an exclusive club of International Union for…

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National Trust announces first beaver reintroductions

THE National Trust has announced plans to release Eurasian beavers[at two sites in the south of England next spring to help with flood management and to improve biodiversity. The beaver reintroductions will be the Trust’s first, linking to its ambitions to create priority habitats for nature and to increase the diversity of species and wildlife…

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Stroll with Dorset Wildlife Trust

DECEMBER  with Dorset Wildlife Trust continues with on Monday 30th December, with the Holes Bay stroll, 10.30am to 1.30pm, to view the salt marsh surrounding Holes Bay. Visit to Upton Country park and tearooms. Meet at Upton House car park. Contact Ken Yeates on 07947 141539. Pictured: Geese and other waterfowl on the edge of…

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Planting the Oudolf way

LANDSCAPE designer Piet Oudolf, whose innovative creations include the Oudolf Field at Hauser & Wirth Somerset, at Bruton, is a leading member of the New Perennials group, particularly noted for his naturalistic planting in swathes of grasses and perennial plants. His work at Hauser & Wirth’s Durslade Farm galleries and arts centre is described in…

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Autumn arrives at Stourhead

IT may have come a bit late, but the autumn colours at Stourhead are attracting plenty of visitors to enjoy the spectacular show around the garden and wider estate. Alan Power, the National Trust’s head gardener at Stourhead, says: “Every autumn at Stourhead is strikingly distinct, with different types of trees changing at different times….

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Enter a world of myths and legends at Longleat

THE impact of this year’s Festival of Light at Longleat is almost overwhelming – astonishing larger than lifesize silk lantern displays of Greek gods and heroes, Chinese dragons, Norse warriors and mythical beasts and monsters. The festival includes more than 3,000 lanterns, crafted using 50,000 LED lights and 30,000 metres of silk. And for the…

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