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Naturehood

Wildlife in the UK is in decline but we can make a difference by working together.

Join Naturehood, and work with your neighbours to support local wildlife.

Nature provides a range of benefits to people, from pollinating food crops and reducing flood risk, to improving health and well-being. However, space for nature is disappearing at an alarming rate. The latest State of Nature report revealed that in less than 50 years, 41% of all UK species have declined, largely as a result of human activity.

But with a little nurturing, nature can thrive in even the most unlikely places. Gardens and communal green spaces can and should be part of the solution. Domestic gardens cover an estimated 2-3% of the total surface area of the UK – almost twice the size of the Lake District. If we carefully manage these patches for wildlife, they could provide important habitats for many of our declining common species.

What is Naturehood?

Naturehood is a new community project that brings people together to support the nature on their doorstep.

Earthwatch works with communities to establish ‘Naturehoods’: focused areas where people support local wildlife. As well as taking action as individuals, people in Naturehoods can participate in free community engagement events, including wildlife walks, talks and family-friendly wildlife workshops. By creating and nurturing shared green spaces, neighbours can meet and reconnect with nature, as well as help wildlife to flourish.

To be able to demonstrate the impact of their Naturehood actions, we are also asking people to carry out surveys about the animals visiting their gardens. This will provide our scientists with valuable data about how effective certain actions are, so that in the future, we can encourage more of the actions that have the biggest positive effect on wildlife.

The first phase of the project, which began in 2019, started with the creation of four Naturehoods in Oxford and Swindon. Naturehood is led by Earthwatch Europe in partnership with Wiltshire Wildlife Trust, and is supported by the National Lottery Heritage Fund.

How can I get involved?

Everyone can get involved in Naturehood – no matter where you live, or how much time or experience you have.

We provide a range of simple ideas that anyone could implement to make their outdoor space a haven for wildlife – from planting flowers to attract bees, to giving animals a place to hibernate by composting leaves.

Individual actions for wildlife are fantastic, but by working together we can make even more of an impact. That’s why we’ve set up ‘Naturehoods’: areas where we encourage neighbours to nurture their local green spaces to create a network of nature havens.

Being part of a Naturehood and joining in activities can help everyone take positive actions for wildlife.

As well as helping wildlife to thrive, Naturehood provides many benefits to people

- Enjoying and reconnecting with nature
- Bringing people together and making strong communities
- Learning new skills and more about nature
- Spending time outdoors, improving health and well-being

Find out more

The 2019 State of Nature report

Learn more about the current health of British wildlife.

Vote for Naturehood!

Help us raise awareness of the decline in wildlife by voting for Earthwatch to feature on one of Oxford’s double-decker buses.

Photo credits: iStock/Nemanja Zotovic; iStock/Henrik_L

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