St Nicks

Centre for nature and green living

24 Feb

Wildwatch January 2020

Highlights Still very few wintering bird visitors or migrants, but lots of invertebrates seen under logs and stones. A surprising number of insects above ground too. First flowers spotted as well as fresh evidence of otter presence.   Weather Wednesdays in January were kind to Wildwatchers, with chilly starts, frequent sun and no rain.   […]

19 Feb

Spotlight on…how and where do St Nicks butterflies spend the winter?

Visit St Nicholas Fields on a sunny summer day and your heart will surely be lifted by the attractive sight of the butterflies on the reserve. Up to 20 species appear regularly each year, some of them in abundance, others harder to find but worth the search. But come Autumn and the show is almost […]

31 Jan

Wildwatch September – December 2019

Highlights Winter birds disappoint, but many new invertebrates found and nine shieldbug species liven up the reserve. Plus a botanical oddity, plenty of fungi and galls.   Weather A mixed bag. The wet Autumn’s heaviest rain fell on non-Wildwatch days. September walks were mainly cloudy following overnight rain. October, November and December brought us a […]

20 Jan

“Housewarming Party” time, or why and how to insulate your floor

Written by St Nicks Outreach Officer and founding member of York Community Energy Ivana Jakubkova who organised a DIY floor insulation workshop, aka a “Housewarming Party”, in April 2019. If you want to know more about the process, please get in touch with Ivana or for purely technical queries contact Andy Walker from SURE Insulation […]

20 Dec

How can I help wildlife thrive in my garden over winter?

Many of us would like to find ways to support our local wildlife, especially when the weather is cold. Here are some of our top tips. Shelter Let (some of) your garden grow wild and leave piles of leaves or long grass to provide shelter for animals and nesting spots for birds. Think about building […]

04 Dec

Developing York’s Green Corridors – and a big welcome to new volunteer Beki

By Jonathan Dent, St Nicks Natural Habitats Manager. We know that so-called “green corridors” are important. By connecting fragments of green space in the urban landscape, these corridors link access to habitats and reduce the isolation of wildlife populations, enabling plants and animals to flourish and improving biodiversity. They also provide benefits for humans by […]

22 Nov

Love Letter to Heworth Holme

By St Nicks Volunteer, Tessa McClary   Look under a leaf, and you’ll spot a bright red ladybug. Dig under the carpet of grass, and you’ll see a worm inching its way through the mud. Watch the puddle next to the bund, until a golden frog lopes his way down to the water. If you […]

13 Nov

Wildwatch summer (June – August 2019)

Written by St Nicks Wildwatch members who meet every Wednesday to record wildlife in the nature reserve. All photos were taken at St Nicks by volunteers, including Lewis Outing, during the given period.   Highlights Painted Ladies star in abundant butterfly summer while Shieldbugs and Hoverflies are everywhere. Warblers stay to sing all summer and […]

11 Nov

Crayfish on the Foss

Written by St Nicks’ Natural Habitats Manager Jonathan Dent. This autumn, thanks to funding from the Postcode Local Trust, we have been privileged to assist wetland ecologist Martin Hammond to survey the upper reaches of the River Foss to determine to state of native white-clawed crayfish populations. White-clawed crayfish are the UK’s only native freshwater […]

18 Oct

With a little help from our friends: St Nicks volunteers making a difference

Our hard working and hardy volunteers have been at it again, day and night, come rain or shine. Apart from our regular weekly sessions, we offer plenty of drop-in opportunities if you’d like to volunteer with us to look for wildlife or to help York to bloom and buzz. Here is a summary of recent […]