Biosphere Bulletin - July 2016
Biosphere Here

Nature Now

What's happening in nature this month

Coming Up...

Biosphere Events in your

Please visit our events calendar for full details of all of the events listed below
Sat 2nd July (13.00-17.00) - Bees & Flowers workshop, Falmer, £10 (book)  (UoS)

Sun 3rd July (10.30+) - Adur Valley walk (Big Lemon bus), £8 (book) (BL)

Sun 3rd July (14.00-17.00) - Railway Land Festival, Lewes, free (RLWT)

Tues 5th July (18.30-21.30) - Think Green about Flooding talks, Hassocks (free) (HKDT)

Fri 8th July (12.00-19.00) - Moulscoomb Forest Garden open day, Brighton, free (MFG)

Fri 8th July (20.00-23.00) - Evening with Glow Worms, Hangleton nr. Hove, £21 (SWT)

Sat 9th July (11.30+) - Hairstreak butterfly walk, Brighton, free (BC)

Sun 10th July (14.00-17.00) - Lamb's Tales bus walk, East Brighton, £2 (book) (Fabrica)

Tues 12th July (10.00-13.00) - Ditchling wildlife walk, Ditchling village, £3 (SWT)

Sat 16th July (10.30+) - Bevendean Blues butterflies walk, Brighton, free (BC)

Sat- Sun 16-17th July (from 08.00) - 'BioBlitz' wildlife surveys, Hassocks, free (book) (HKDT)

Sat 23rd July (10.00-15.00) - Butterfly & Moth walk, Swanborough Hill nr Lewes, free (BC)

Tues 26th July (18.00-19.00) - New Energy talk, Brighton, free (book) (Fabrica) 

Sun 7th Aug (10.30+) - Plumpton & Blackcap walk (Big Lemon bus), £8 (book) (BL)

Weds 17th Aug (18.00-19.45) - Edible Landscape talk, Brighton, £3 (book) (Fabrica)

Biosphere Here

July 2016

Swift Thinking called for 

Dear <<Name>>

We're now in the midst of summer, although it may not feel much like it at present! Get outdoors between the rain showers however, and you'll find plenty of activity in the natural world - see our monthly 'Nature Now' diary to find out what's happening.

"One swallow does not a summer make" (Aristotle, 4th century BC) is a saying that would seem to apply also to the similar-looking swift
(see the 'WoW' section below left to find out how to tell them apart).

The swift is a
bird that literally livens up our skies each summer, but in recent years its characteristic cries and aerobatic stunts have become an increasingly rare experience for us urban-dwellers. In contrast to current societal concerns over migration, this is a migrant species whose reductions in numbers is causing people concern.

We can however help make a difference to the majestic swift's fortunes, as encouraged in this month's Bio Blog (below right) by Rebecca Ashwood of the RSPB . We want to hear from you if you see swifts flying low over roofs or entering a nest hole, so please complete the RSPB's survey. You can also help out by putting up artificial nest boxes, and avoiding roof works when birds are nesting (and leaving an entry space open for them).

On the theme of summer, there's lots of great eco-events going on at this time of year that you can get out and enjoy, as detailed in our Biosphere's Calendar (list, left). Some highlights include the Lewes Railway Land annual festival this Sunday 3rd; Moulsecoomb Forest Garden open day on Friday 8th and 'The Third Paradise' exhibition and events by Fabrica gallery Brighton.

Don't let our summer pass you by! 
Rich Howorth
Brighton & Lewes Downs Biosphere Partnership

Window On
Our World

Summer Migrant Birds

A wide range of birds migrate to our shores each spring/summer, to breed, nest and raise their young - before leaving again for warmer climes further south. Some distinctive migrant birds in our Biosphere area are:

~ Swifts - scimitar-winged bird with short forked tail, especially active at dusk screaming high over city skies

~ Swallows (pic above) - a bird with long tail streamers, seen chasing insects and perched on telephone wires on countryside areas

~ House Martins - with white rump and short forked tail, with distinctive mud nests under the eaves of buildings 

Bio Blog

Swifts - The Sound of Summer 

The birds you can see at the moment performing aerial acrobatics and skidding madly over houses in Brighton & Lewes in their ‘screaming parties’ are swifts.

Each summer we look forward to welcoming home ‘our’ swifts from their winter grounds in Africa, as one of the iconic sights and sounds of summer over our city and towns.

We are incredibly lucky to be able to enjoy these stunning migrant birds, as their numbers have been in steep decline - partly due to a loss of nest sites. Swifts are the best house guests you could ever dream of, so please help by welcoming them to your home! 
read full blog

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