Nature Watch

Nature Watch

Luki finds the first Orchids!

Published in Nature Watch

Luki is one of Hvar's happiest dogs, and one of Hvar's greatest nature-lovers. On March 15th, he sniffed out early orchids not far from Vrboska. 

Hvar's Springtime Treats

Published in Nature Watch

Sunshine, mild weather and some occasional outbursts of rain are bringing Hvar's spring on at great speed.

Saving Wildlife and Biodiversity: Looking to the Future

Published in Nature Watch

Your support is needed! November 2019 saw the launch of the European Citizens' Initiative petition under the title 'Save Bees and Farmers'. Please sign it, if you haven't done so already.

Dragonflies and Damselflies

Published in Nature Watch

These delicate-looking, exquisite creatures play an important part in the natural chain. They are especially useful to humans because of their voracious appetite for mosquitoes and other biting insects such as midges. While they feast greedily on their preferred prey, they are totally harmless to humans.

Birdwatch, June - July 2019

Published in Nature Watch

Steve Jones of Dol recounts his observations during June and July 2019, a mixture of some disappointments balanced by unexpected joys, including a couple of bird rescues!

Dead bats in Pitve, July 2019

Published in Nature Watch

Two dead bats lying close together on their doorstep were a sad surprise which greeted a couple in Pitve on the morning of July 24th 2019.

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Eco Environment News feeds

  • Survey of 600 people finds some parents regret having offspring for same reason

    People worried about the climate crisis are deciding not to have children because of fears that their offspring would have to struggle through a climate apocalypse, according to the first academic study of the issue.

    The researchers surveyed 600 people aged 27 to 45 who were already factoring climate concerns into their reproductive choices and found 96% were very or extremely concerned about the wellbeing of their potential future children in a climate-changed world. One 27-year-old woman said: “I feel like I can’t in good conscience bring a child into this world and force them to try and survive what may be apocalyptic conditions.”

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  • The best of the week’s wildlife pictures from around the world, including desert-dwelling sheep and a plant that has evolved to hide from humans

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  • With nearly 400,000 crew members trapped at sea by Covid restrictions, it’s time for retailers like Amazon to help press for key worker status

    This weekend is one of the planet’s busiest shopping sprees, with an estimated £66bn to be spent in the UK alone over Black Friday and Cyber Monday, much of it online. Yet as shoppers click and wait to collect, there is a crisis at sea among the people whose work brings us these goods.

    It is no exaggeration to say that without shipping the global marketplace would collapse. It is responsible for the movement of 90% of all global trade. Even in normal circumstances, more than a million seafarers labour daily on the vessels that make up the world cargo fleet, their work barely noticed by consumers. As Covid-19 has ravaged the world, they have helped keep the global economy functioning, unseen.

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  • Amitav Ghosh, Margaret Atwood and Emma Thompson are among 20 activists and cultural figures to speak at Writers Rebel event

    Writers and activists including Emma Thompson, Margaret Atwood and Amitav Ghosh are to speak about their favourite endangered animals as part of a remembrance day for lost species.

    The snow leopard, pangolin and vaquita porpoise are among the endangered animals that will be championed by participants at the free online event, On the Brink, organised by Writers Rebel, which is part of Extinction Rebellion.

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  • Public accounts committee says ignorance, incompetence and weak oversight to blame

    The Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA) has a perpetual lack of knowledge about the state and location of waste on the 17 sites it is responsible for making safe, a powerful committee of MPs has found.

    This results from decades of poor record keeping and weak government oversight, the MPs said. Combined with a “sorry saga” of incompetence and failure, this has left taxpayers footing the bill for “astronomical sums”, they said.

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  • Industry promotes materialism and lifts sales of climate-harming products, study says

    Advertising needs to be controlled and changed to reduce its impact on the climate, according to a report released as consumers prepare to spend billions on Black Friday.

    The report by the New Weather Institute thinktank and the charity We are Possible examines how advertising indirectly contributes to climate change and the ecological emergency.

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  • The winning images of the 2020 British Ecological Society photography competition, taken by international ecologists and students, celebrate the diversity of the planet’s flora and fauna

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  • An investigation into the Queen Hind sinking a year ago is yet to be published and the live export trade continues to boom

    Romania has been accused of “complete silence” over its investigation into the sinking of the Queen Hind last November, which resulted in the deaths of more than 14,000 sheep.

    Rescuers who rushed to the sinking Queen Hind vessel, which left Romania’s Black Sea port of Midia a year ago, managed to save just 228 sheep out of a total 14,600, but only 180 ultimately survived the ordeal.

    Romania’s prime minister Ludovic Orban vowed on television last year to end live exports in the “medium-term”. However, since the Queen Hind disaster more than 2 million live animals have been exported from Romania – mostly to north Africa and the Middle East.

    Romanian authorities have claimed the vessel was 10% below capacity and that the animals were “clinically healthy and fit for transport”. But campaigners say the vessel was overloaded and this ultimately led to the thousands of sheep drowning in the Black Sea.

    The only information to emerge since the sinking has been the discovery of secret compartments onboard with dead animals inside, by the company hired to remove the ship from the water.

    Romania’s transport ministry told the Guardian this week that investigations are concluded and said a summary of the report will be published on the ministry’s website. They also said that the purpose of the technical investigation was to establish maritime safety issues and to prevent future accidents, and “not to establish guilt in people involved”.

    EU law stipulates that investigations into maritime accidents should be reported in full within 12 months, but that if a final report is not possible in that timeframe, then “an interim report shall be published within 12 months of the date” of the event.

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  • Report suggests tree growth will not store nearly as much carbon as scientists hoped

    Global heating appears to be making trees drop their leaves earlier, according to new research, confounding the idea that warmer temperatures delay the onset of autumn.

    The finding is important because trees draw huge amounts of carbon dioxide from the air and therefore play a key role in managing the climate.

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  • Oyster Clough, Derbyshire: A decade ago, I wouldn’t have mentioned it in print, but now the number of visitors has soared

    The true start of winter is often debated, but none of the definitions I know include mid-November. That didn’t stop a razor-edged northerly blowing off the moors from knifing me in the ribs. I stopped to put on my spare jacket, but it seemed hopelessly unequal to the job. “Is that all you brought?” my companion asked. Luckily for me, by the time we emerged from the woods above the Snake Inn into bright sunshine, the wind had moderated. But the sky above was still cold-forged with that intense blue of winter, tinged pink in places in the low-angled light.

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