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Biodiversity, Nature Recovery and Food

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Support Biodiversity and Nature Recovery

“In wildness is the preservation of the world” - Henry David Thoreau

In a very short period we have mined earth, exploiting nature’s resources. Wildlife is no longer abundant. Biodiversity is massively threatened. We have created extinctions amongst beautiful key species of trees, plants, insects, fish, mammals and birds. Nature is not infinite – its imbalance has created climate change. We are part of nature and biodiversity is essential for our survival. It is our task now to help restore nature’s balance, and we CAN do very simple things in our own community. Here are small steps we CAN all take:

  • Observe & be aware of nature around us. Use IRecord to help the scientific community record progress for biodiversity & nature recovery.

  • Do not use poisonous chemicals in your garden – grow organically.

  • Grow pollinating plants for bees, butterflies & moths - these help vegetables grow too.

  • Only buy peat-free compost, make your own & support Bisley Community Composting Scheme which provides home-grown, live, local compost.

  • Let your gardens go wilder – weeds are wonderful for wildlife – a small patch of wildflowers supports many insects & old logs support beetles.

  • Make a small pond or bog garden – great for frogs, insects & entertaining children. Build a bird box & a bat box on your house, garage or extension.

  • Help BisCAN’s Balsalm bashing project to restore wildlife to streams.

  • Support Bisley’s community orchards – and plant a fruit tree of your own.

  • Punch a hole in your fence so that hedgehogs can forage easily for food across neighbouring gardens – or plant a hedge and remove the fence.

  • Take every opportunity to plant a tree & replace diseased trees.

  • Welcome unmown verges – unkempt is not unkind – our council policies.

  • Cycle or walk to Bisley’s local shops, save fossil fuels, & reduce the possibility of accidentally killing wildlife & poisoning plants & animals.

  • Buy local organic food, grow your own, eat seasonally – even a few salads, herbs & simple crops like potatoes can reduce food bills & shopping trips.

For brilliant ideas see: The Wildlife Trusts Nature Recovery Network Handbook.

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Record Wildlife

Why is it so important to record wildlife?         

  • Monitor what we have to see for trends in gains/losses and increases/declines.

  • Check effectiveness of regeneration/improvement of habitat.

  • Inform planning decisions.

  • Identify and monitor common and rare species – all recordings are important.


What information should we record?

  • Species name

  • Location/grid reference

  • Date

  • Number/abundance

  • Habitat

  • Photo

  • Recorded/Determiner

  • Stage


How do we record wildlife?

  • Suggested web-based iRecord. Set up an account at brc.ac.uk/irecord/

  • Verified by Gloucestershire experts

  • Go to county recorder & county record centre

  • Entering wildlife information on the computer or via a smart phone app is very easy – find the app in your app store.

Have a look at the irecord tutorial by Montgomeryshire Wildlife Trust at or google iRecord App Tutorial.

Enjoy recording and help wildlife!

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Increase Plant Based Food

Many food types have far less of an impact than others. The most impact you CAN have by reducing your carbon footprint through food is focusing on what you eat. So how do the carbon footprints of different food compare?  The figure above shows the greenhouse emissions associated with the production of 1kg of various food types.  These data are from the Environmental Impacts of Food Production paper.

Animal-based foods have a much higher footprint than plant-based. For example, peas emit just 1 kilogram per kg compared to 60 kilograms of greenhouse gases for beef. Most GHG emissions result from farming and land use change - together, more than 80% of the footprint for most foods. GHG emissions from transportation has a very small impact, so focusing on what you eat rather than whether your food is local has the greatest impact – for more information see https://ourworldindata.org/food-choice-vs-eating-local

Have you tried the BBC climate change food calculator – what’s your diets carbon footprint?

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Support agroecological farming

Agroecological farming is driven by principles of ecology, working more in harmony with nature and the environment, promoting biodiversity through wildlife shelter belts, wild flower meadows and capturing carbon in the soil. This is not the predominant form of agriculture in the UK - we need a seismic shift to tackle climate change, protect natural resources and recover ecosystems. The UK government are developing a scheme where farmers will be paid in future for providing environmental services. You CAN make a difference now by supporting agro-ecological farming. Look for an organic or pasture for life label – for example:

Soil Association

Organic Farmers and Growers

Pasture Fed Livestock Association

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Reducing food waste and growing your own

According to the FAO, 100kg of food is wasted per person per year at the consumption stage alone. Could you reduce your food waste? Have a look at the BBC good food guide for inspiration on how to reduce your food waste.

Have you considered growing your own food? These garden organic grow cards provide you with all the information you need about how and where to grow your own, fruit, vegetables and herbs.

Rent an allotment from the Parish Council

Finally, have a look at and get behind our new national food strategy, for a healthy, fairer and more sustainable food system, for people, animals and the planet.

How do you help biodiversity, nature recovery and make a difference   through food? We’d love to hear what you do!