Somerset Wildlife Trust

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Top ten green tips for back to school or work

Nicky for webHere are some more suggestions from Trustee Nicky Saunter  in her Ten Top Tips series

Yes, I know it's a bit late, but this is a good time of year to think of change, as the autumn comes, the swallows leave and the view opens out behind bare branches. So here goes - some ideas to get you moving in a new direction:

1. Promise you will go to school or work by public transport or by foot or bicycle just ONCE. You never know, you may even like it and you will be helping your local living landscape to breathe more easily.

2. If you are a keen cyclist, why not start a cycling group at school or work and make sure your boss knows about the cycle to work scheme with its incentives to buy cheap bikes. Or get a recycled local bike from On Your Bike.

3. Be mindful of the natural world in your everyday life - see how many creatures you can spot during your working day. You will be surprised. And why not report what you see to the Somerset Environmental Records Centre here. Your data is really valuable to us.

4. Join your local wildlife group - they hold talks, walks and special events, and you can go as often as you like. There are also watch groups for children. If there isn't one close to you, why not start one - think of your own childhood and how much fun you had outside discovering nature.

recumbent bike5. Does your workplace or school have a recycling system? If not, why not start one? Every little helps and people often forget to so at work what they do automatically at home.

6. When you are out walking, take your camera or phone with you and have a go at taking some wildlife shots - send your best ones to us and they might even appear in next year's calendar.

7. Try to buy something to eat every week from a local supplier - and if you can't find any in your regular shop, then ask them to consider stocking some. Our landscape depends on farmers for its survival, and farmers in turn depend on its biodiversity for their own survival. Plus there is nothing as delicious as local honey on toast!

8. Don't tidy your garden up for winter too much and leave some logs, twigs and leaf debris around for wildlife to make their homes in. You will find lots of ideas on our website about creative ways to encourage wildlife in your gardens, plus you could join our Wildlife Gardening Group.

9. Read an inspirational book about nature - there are some great authors out there who bring the natural world to life and might inspire you to get out and about more. From the great Gilbert White to Roger Deakin and more recently, our own vice president Stephen Moss, there are plenty to choose from.

10. Enjoy what's here on your doorstep - if you are taking a break at half term, why not explore somewhere in Somerset you have never been, walk the Parrett Trail or explore one of our nature reserves. Take time to sit and stare - and take some binoculars just in case something special emerges.

Nicky Saunter