As I write this edition for Keele Wildlife Society... May is coming to a close! According to the Met Office, this spring has been the sunniest since records began with over 573 hours of sunshine recorded. I hope you all have been able to enjoy the sunshine and recent warm temperatures!
Each time I take a walk or cycle I feel lucky; lucky to live in the countryside, lucky to be able to enjoy wildlife and lucky for being able to watch the season's progress. This week I have been on a 5-mile walk along the River Stour, passing through fields and areas of wildlife conservation. I was able to see and hear so much wildlife; I admit I notice more these days compared to ever before. One of the most frequent sightings was of the Enallagma Cyathigerum (Common Blue Damselfly). However, another common sighting was of rubbish including takeaway wrappers and personal protection equipment (PPE). This is a huge disappointment. The local takeaway has only just reopened and demand for PPE remains high….. What makes people decide to leave their rubbish in the countryside?
As many of us are aware, this is not a unique experience. A simple online search brings up multiple news articles from large scale fly tipping to individuals throwing rubbish from car windows. One reason for an increase in fly tipping this spring is the temporary closure of recycling centres and with many spending so much time indoors; it is unsurprising that the amount of waste we are accumulating has grown. But, we must be responsible. We must look after wildlife and the countryside. Many of us within the society are active in litter picking and may feel encouraged to do so when we see litter around our local areas. If you are litter picking to help make wildlife safe, ensure you keep yourself safe - especially when dealing with discarded PPE.
As always, send us our stories or photos of wildlife around you!