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(via The Tree Council)

Walk in the Woods is the Tree Council’s month-long festival to encourage everyone to enjoy trees and woods in spring. Across the UK, walks, talks and other events take place in town and countryside throughout May – a great month to go down to the woods or to a local park or just enjoy tree-lined streets. Spring flowers, birdsong and fresh green leaves make them particularly inviting.

Walk in the Woods month is a great time to organise an event and get new people interested in trees – especially in their local patch. A particular aim of Walk in the Woods is to attract people who rarely, if ever, visit woods – even those on their doorstep.

Interested in getting involved? All events can be found on our events map. To find out about some of the things that took place in your area last year, you can look at past events. If you’re interested in organising your own event in 2012, read further to get some useful tips on how to organise exciting walks and other activities. Don’t forget to register your event, so that other people can come and join you!

If you want to get as much local involvement as possible, you can download the free 2012 poster as many times as you like (please download the 2012 poster below).  Just fill in the details of when and where your event is taking place, or a contact number for information, and put it up on local notice boards.

Don’t forget to record your bluebell sightings for the The National Trust’s Bluebell Watch Simply tweet the location’s postcode and tag #bluebellwatch.

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International Dawn Chorus Day is the worldwide celebration of Nature’s daily Miracle. In 2012, it takes place on 6 May.

This year there will be more opportunities than ever to join in the excitement. In the run up to the event events from all over the world and across the UK will be listed on this website, so visit us regularly to see what’s planned in your area.

If you are planning an event you can now create your own listing for your event, including sounds, pictures and details of your organisation. Just register here to set up an IDCD account. If you would like to organise an event and are not sure where to start take a look here.

If you have any questions or would like to join our email list please contact the IDCD team at

I hope you enjoy being part of International Dawn Chorus Day this year!

Neil Wyatt,
Chief Executive, The Wildlife Trust for Birmingham and the Black Country

Simon King holding a nest box

“National Nest Box Week is great for birds. Starting on St Valentine’s Day, it’s the time we remind ourselves to provide homes for dozens of species, from Blue Tits to Barn Owls.

If you’ve never built a nest box before, why not give it a go this year? Or if you haven’t got the time, it’s easy to buy a good one. Go on, take part for Britain’s birds!”

Simon King's signature

National Nestbox Week (14-21 February 2012) aims to encourage everyone to put up nest boxes in their local area in order to promote and enhance biodiversity and conservation of our breeding birds and wildlife.

The natural nest sites on which many of our bird species depend, such as holes in trees and buildings, are fast disappearing as gardens and woods are ‘tidied’ and old houses are repaired. Since National Nest Box Week was launched in 1997, thousands of enthusiastic naturalists across the UK have put up boxes to compensate for this loss. It is estimated that there are now 5-6 million boxes in gardens across the UK.

Whether you’re a family with space for a box in your garden, a teacher, a member of a local wildlife group, or you belong to a bird club and could organise a work party, National Nest Box Week gives you the chance to contribute to the conservation effort in the UK whilst giving you the pleasure of observing any breeding birds that you attract to your garden.

Big Garden Birdwatch is fun, free, really easy, and only takes an hour. You can do your birdwatch wherever you like – at home, in your local park, or do it as part of a group at an RSPB event near you.

When, what, where

All you need is a pen, some scrap paper (or, a printout of this handy Big Garden Birdwatch 2012 counting sheet), and an hour to spend watching the birds in your garden, or local park, on either Saturday 28, or Sunday 29 January 2012.

Simply make a note of the highest number of each bird species seen on the ground (not flying over) at any one time, and return to the Big Garden Birdwatch page to submit your info.

Check out this video for some of the more unusual places that people did their 2011 birdwatch:

Where do you do Big Garden Birdwatch? from The RSPB on Vimeo.

How this information helps

For over 30 years, the RSPB have been asking the public to count the birds in their garden and each year more people get involved.

With results from so many gardens, the RSPB are able to create a ‘snapshot’ of bird numbers in each region – and they can see that some of our birds are disappearing in scary numbers.

We’ve lost more than half our house sparrows and some three-quarters of our starlings.

These surveys not only help highlight problems but are the first step in putting things right.