British Wildlife in June

Changing Nature Episode 004

There is such a variety of life emerging at this time of year, be on the lookout and you will be sure to capture some of Nature’s magic. 

British wildlife in june podcast

Apple Podcasts | Spotify | Stitcher

The longer warmer days of June bring some wonderful animals and plants into view. Following our theme of connecting with nature in simple ways of looking, listening and feeling the nature around us, I want to share with you some species you can look out for this month and where to find them. 

As you know, I believe community and collaboration are the keys to progress, so I will also be sharing three community events and celebrations you can get involved in this month.

BRITISH FLOWERS IN JUNE

June is the month when many native british flowering plants come into bloom, washing the landscape and our gardens with colour. The foxgloves in our garden are climbing skyward this month with their magical pink columns of bells. Buttercups, daisies, poppies, dog rose and the elderflowers are blossoming this month, an important source of food for pollinating insects, birds and small mammals. Some of our native orchids can be found in bloom this month too - pink pyramidal orchids, with their distinctive shape, can me found on chalk grassland and roadside verges pollinated by day and night flying moths, and the self pollinated bee orchid, which thrives in grassy places with chalky or limy soil. This is a species which was formally only found in the south of England, but now, due to the change in our climate, has been recorded as far north as scotland.

BRITISH BUTTERFLIES AND MOTHS IN JUNE

This month we see many beautiful butterflies and moths. Red admirals, peacock butterflies and commas with their gorgeous scalloped wings can be seen throughout the country. The intricate Speckled wood butterfly can be spotted in woodland flying in the dappled sunlight. We have seen some fluttering about in theri playful way in the wilder parts of our garden recently too. Private hawkmoths fly this month too. They are the largest resident month in the UK with a wingspan of 12cm, and their pointed brown forewings and bright pink hindwings make them something to behold. 

If you are very lucky to be in a meadow or hillside on a sunny day this month you might spot the Marsh fritillary butterfly with its orange yellow and brown checkered wings, though habitat loss have made them rare. Launch of more rewilding and conservation projects means that they might be supported to make a comeback though. So hopefully we will see more and more.  

BRITISH BEETLES IN JUNE

Some of our largest most impressive beetles emerge this month. Britain has two types of stag beetles, the stag and lesser stag. The grubs of both species have been underground for several years feeding on rotting wood, and this month they emerge. You will find the larger Stag beetles flying on warm June evenings in the south east of Britain and New Forest  on woodland edges, in hedgerows, parks and gardens. They are glossy brown and the males have large jaws which resemble antlers. 

The much more widespread lesser stag beetle still spends much of its adult life underground, but you can see it this month. It’s a duller balck and has shorter jaws than the stag beetle. 

BABY BIRDS IN JUNE

This month you might see more and more baby birds and fledglings, perched on branches or in hedgerows. You may also see them on the ground, which is normal for many species. The adults are often close by keeping an eye on their young as they develop, but if you are worried, you can check out guidance on the wildlife trusts website here for advice on what to do If you find a baby bird.

If you keep outdoor cats, it might be a good idea to keep them inside if you notice fledglings around until those young birds have gone. 

Little owl chicks will start to come out from their nests to perch this month. Not yet ready to fly, they are starting to experience the outside world. You might spot the adults perched on fence posts watching and waiting to catch prey for their hungry brood.

BRITISH BATS AND PINE MARTINS

The warmer weather of June prompts pregnant female bats to aggregate together. Most commonly they form these maternity roosts in buildings with warm, south- facing roofs. Each female gives birth to a single pup, which she will care for for about a month, when the young will be strong enough to survive alone. You are most likely to see the common or soprano pipistrelle bat as these are Britain’s two most abundant species of bat.

Another young mammal you might spot this month is the semi arboreal pine marten. The young or kits are coming out of their dens for the first time in June. Following a dramatic decrease in numbers between the 16th and 19th centuries, due to human exploitation, they are now recovering in numbers as reintroduction efforts has seen them brought back to mid-Wales, and the Forest of Dean.

There is such a variety of life emerging at this time of year, be on the lookout and you will be sure to capture some of Nature’s magic. 

NATURE EVENTS IN JUNE

If you are inspired by the bursting of new life on the scene in June, you might also be inspired to take part in some of the nature and conservation activities that are going on this month. 

June is the time of The Wildlife Trusts' annual 30 days wild challenge - the UK's biggest nature challenge! To take part you are asked to do one wild thing a day throughout the month of June. With sensory bingo, wild word searches and lots of ideas of things to do, its a really excellent thing to do with children to help them foster a wonderful mindset towards nature and a relationship with the wind that will benefit their mental health as they grow.

You can sign up  to receive a FREE pack at wildlifetrusts.org/30dayswild which you can receive either through the post or via email.

The second event I wanted to mention this month is National insect week. Organised by the Royal Entomological Society Insect Week encourages people of all ages to learn more about the science, natural history and conservation of insects.

There are lots of events going on between the 20th and 26th June, which you can find out more about at insectweek.co.uk/events 

Finally, June 22nd is World rainforest day. The day that sees a global summit designed to create a collective, global movement to protect and restore rainforest ecosystems. Founded in 2017 by Rainforest Partnership, World Rainforest Day recognizes standing, healthy forests as one of the most powerful and cost-effective climate change mitigation tools that we have and aims to create a global movement to protect and restore them. You can find out more about summit at worldrainforestday.org

I hope you feel inspired by what you might see and do this month to foster a greater connection to nature - there's certainly a lot going on! 

Back to blog