I love Christmas but, for my own wellbeing, I love to get out and about in nature as well as seeing family and friends and eating too much.
We are members of our local wildlife trust and Christmas is a great time to get out and about and enjoy some of the nature reserves we haven’t visited yet.
Today it was the turn of Wheldrake Ings, about 30 minutes South-East of where I live in York. It is managed by the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust. There are no facilities at the site so you need to come prepared. We parked at the nearby Lower Derwent Valley National Nature Reserve site and walked down beside the river to Wheldrake Ings.
We didn’t see a huge number of birds in the mist today although Winter is a great time to visit to see all the migratory birds. We could certainly hear them though and it was so atmospheric in the mist. The spider’s webs glistened with the droplets of mist – like natural Christmas decorations.
Wild spaces like this are absolutely vital for both wildlife and our own mental health and wellbeing. There is nothing quite as restorative as a walk through a peaceful nature reserve with just the sounds of birds calling.
Another amazing Yorkshire Wildlife Trust site near to me is Askham Bog, only around 4 miles from where I live in York. This site is currently threatened by the building of almost 500 homes right next door.
If you have read this and share my view that it is vital to protect our ever dwindling green spaces for wildlife and future generations, please read about the threat to Askham Bog. You only have until 9 January to object to the plans. Sneaky developers often put in applications close to holidays like Christmas when they know people will be too preoccupied with other things to take the time to object. Let’s prove them wrong!
I look forward to visiting my next Yorkshire Wildlife Trust Nature Reserve and would love to hear your stories of sites for nature and wildlife near where you live.
Read more about the work of the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust and the nature reserves it manages here.