The 10 best woods and forests for spring flowersGuardian Unlimited | 08 Apr 2011
A visit to Priestley Wood in spring or early summer should test even the most knowledgeable plant-identifier. Some 130 flowering plants have been recorded in the woods, which have been designated a site of special scientific interest. There are relatively large populations of the twayblade orchid, the common spotted orchid, wild garlic, broad-leaved helleborine, herb Paris, primrose and the ever-popular bluebell.
Letters: Vanished landscapeGuardian Unlimited | 05 Apr 2011
Surely Jane Austen would recognise a remarkable change to the landscape of the South Downs since her time (Report, 1 April)? Natural history writers such as WH Hudson would be devastated by it. Grazing of these hills for thousands of years had produced an open landscape providing the freedom to...
Small birds thriving after harsh winterGuardian Unlimited | 31 Mar 2011
Small birds have made a comeback this year after a dramatic decline in their numbers last spring, according to findings from the wildlife survey Big Garden Birdwatch. Experts feared the worst after last year's results, which showed that the coldest winter for 30 years, in 2009- 10, had been...
Anne the elephant leaves Bobby Roberts circus after cruelty inquiryGuardian Unlimited | 31 Mar 2011
RSPCA and police called in after Animal Defenders secretly film circus worker kicking and beating Anne the elephant. One of the country's most famous circuses has become a target for animal welfare activists after a worker was secretly filmed beating an elephant. Police were called to the Bobby Roberts Super Circus big top near Knutsford, Cheshire, as families from the audience leaving the performance were heckled by protesters.
Granny osprey flies back to Scotland from Africa for record 21st timeGuardian Unlimited | 29 Mar 2011
Lady, oldest osprey in the UK, is preparing to mate in Dunkeld, Scotland, after travelling thousands of miles from the GambiaOne of the world's oldest ospreys, which has already laid 58 eggs and seen 48 chicks leave her nest, has returned to her roost in the Highlands, breaking her own record for...
Adder abnormalities lead to UK's first genetic survey of snakesGuardian Unlimited | 27 Mar 2011
Researchers want to find out if decreasing numbers of snakes caused by urbanisation has led to inbreeding among adders. With a quick dart of the arm, snake catcher Nigel Hand snares his prey and holds the wriggling adder aloft. The bronze snake, hissing and flicking out its black forked tongue, has...
The week in wildlifeGuardian Unlimited | 25 Mar 2011
Spring sightings, music for plants and flood-escaping spiders - the pick of this week's images from the natural world.
Ireland's wildlife audit unveiledYahoo! News | 23 Mar 2011
Ireland's scenic mountains woodlands and waterways are home to more than 31000 different species of flora and fauna.
Yann Arthus-Bertrand: Looking down on creationGuardian Unlimited | 20 Mar 2011
Yann Arthus-Bertrand isn't just an aerial photographer: he's on a mission to save mankind by teaching us to love our beautiful planet. To many, he is France's answer to Al Gore, but why do some think he's an "enormous idiot"? In 2005, while filming the devastation of Hurricane Katrina, Yann Arthus-Bertrand fell to earth in a helicopter accident. On the way down, he says, he had no fear of dying, but he was filled with thoughts of "home".
Illegal trawlers are Bethune's new targetGuardian Unlimited | 16 Mar 2011
Pete Bethune spent four months in a Japanese jail for action against whalers. Now he has new targets in his sights "Don't make me out to be violent, or some kind of cowboy," says Pete Bethune, as he holds me in his steady, brown-eyed gaze. Seven months on from his release from a Japanese prison, after being convicted for taking direct action against whaling ships and crew, we've met in a south London pub to discuss his new campaign group, Earthrace Conservation.
Great British Marine AnimalsGuardian Unlimited | 09 Mar 2011
Toxic sea slugs, battling limpets and aggressive gobies are among the sea life featured in the book Great British Marine Animals
Wales to press ahead with badger cullGuardian Unlimited | 09 Mar 2011
Welsh rural affairs minister Elin Jones gives go ahead to much-delayed move intended to control bovine tuberculosis. A badger cull in Wales to curb tuberculosis in cattle could finally be launched, just weeks after the Welsh assembly government said the necessary powers would come into force from...
The week in wildlifeGuardian Unlimited | 25 Feb 2011
From mysterious pony deaths on Bodmin Moor to a grey whale in a calving lagoon, this week's pick of images from the natural world.
Mass rat cull for remote UK islandGuardian Unlimited | 24 Feb 2011
Eradication programme aims to save millions of seabirds from invasive rats on South Georgia. Testing for the biggest rat eradication programme in history is beginning on a remote UK island in the south Atlantic. Scientists are preparing to drop poison in a limited area of South Georgia in a bid to save the world's most southern songbird from extinction and restore tens of millions of seabirds to the island's breeding grounds.
Plantwatch: a divided nationGuardian Unlimited | 23 Feb 2011
Britain has been a divided nation this month - the north dogged by cold winds, the south largely mild and balmy. So it's small wonder that the early spring flowers are barely showing in Scotland and Northern Ireland, but in the southern half of the country spring is well under way – snowdrops, celandines, daffodils, crocuses and hazel catkins are coming into bloom and the leaf buds of elder trees starting to break open.