Biosphere Bulletin - March 2017
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 4th March (10:00-16:00) - Community Energy Workshop, Linklater Pavilion

Sat-Sun 11th-12th March (11:00-18:00) - VegFest UK, Brighton Centre

Sun 12th March (15:00-17:00) - Pollinator talk, Ditchling

Wed 15th March (10:00-12:00) - Quayside Walk, Newhaven

Sat 25th March (10:30-17:00) - Green Architecture Day, Brighton, £10-£85

Wed 29th March (10:00-12:00) - Stroll around Big Park, Peacehaven

Wed 29th March (09:00-16:30) - South Downs Annual Teachers' Conference, Plumpton
Wed 5th April (10:00-12:30) - Signs of Spring children's activity day, Lewes

Sat-Mon 15-17th April (11.00-15.00) - Easter Egg Hunt, Saddlescombe, £3 (NT)

Mon 17th April (10.45-12.00) - Easter Egg Rolling, Devil's Dyke, £1 (NT)

Sun 23rd April (09:00+) - Mayor's Charity Bike Rides x2, Hove start, £5-£20 Register

Sun 30th April (09:00-18:30) - Walk the Brighton & Hove Way with the Mayor, Saltdean to Portslade Register

Assistant Community Ranger, Lewes District Council
Apply by 6th March! - Details

Charity Consultants & Outdoor Educators, Railway Land Wildlife Trust Lewes . Apply by 15th March - Details


House sparrow survey vols sought by Wildlife Forum in Brighton & Hove, April-May - Details

Swift survey vols sought by RSPB in Brighton, May-July - Details

Stanmer Community Garden Group, Tues & Fri: gardening, plus PR & project support - Details

Biosphere Here

March 2017

Keeping the Common, commonplace 
- give our house sparrows a home!

Dear <<Name>>

The early signs of spring are slowly starting to show - see our monthly Nature Now diary for the natural forecast - and wildlife is waking up from the winter dormancy, none more so than the birds who are setting up their nesting territories.
And what bird could be more familiar and common place than the ubiquitous House Sparrow? Or is it?

We explore the status of this cheeky urban bird in this month's Bio Blog (below right), by Anne Hyatt of Brighton & Hove's Wildlife Forum, who shows us how we can all get involved in helping to record where they are found in the city and what we can do in our own gardens to improve their threatened outlook. 
You can also help the plight of migrant Swifts too through surveys this summer of your neighbourhood (details below left).
And keep a look out too for some of the other iconic urban birds listed
in our 'WoW' section (below left).  

There's lots of local eco-events now planned for the approaching spring season - see our Biosphere Calendar (summary list, left). These include great cycling and walking charity challenges led by Brighton & Hove's Mayor in late April, for which registrations are now open - are you up for an adventure in our Biosphere?

March is a big month for our Biosphere, when we will be launching a fresh new identity for our eco-programme and area - watch this space for an announcement! 

Wishing you a (positively) mad March!
Rich Howorth
Brighton & Lewes Downs Biosphere Partnership

Window On
Our World

Iconic Urban Birds

A variety of bird species can be spotted in the urban areas of our Biosphere Region, including the:

~ House Sparrow
'Red-listed' once-ubiquitous bird, but still numerous in Sussex gardens (pic above)

~ Robin
The gardener's companion, found in 84% of Sussex gardens in 2015

~ Blackbird 
Tuneful songster, recorded in over 85% of Sussex gardens in  2015

~ Starling 
the 'murmuration' over Brighton’s Palace Pier from an hour before sunset 

~ Peregrine Falcon
Spectacular super-fast predator you may spot around Shoreham power station and Lewes quarries 


Bio Blog

Homes for House Sparrows

The House Sparrow is one of the most iconic urban birds in Britain, sharing our gardens with us. This bustling little bird is now in serious trouble however, following a nationwide collapse in numbers over the past 25 years.

They have now almost disappeared from central London - wouldn't it be terribly sad if the same happened here?

House sparrows don't move around much, so once a colony is gone it is difficult to restore. However there are practical steps which we can take to help them!

Brighton and Hove’s Wildlife Forum is developing a House Sparrows Project
and is looking for people this spring to help complete local surveys.

All of us can help in our gardens by 3 simple steps…
read full blog

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