It's amazing how much life a buddleia bush can attract - butterflies, bees, moths, hoverflies and an assortment of other flying insects feasting on the purple offerings. Buddleia is so simple to grow. Plant it. Leave it. Watch it spring to life and live up to its name (the butterfly bush). Cut it hard back … Continue reading Butterflies, bees and buddleia – brilliant!
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f3p0YvKkqKA&feature=youtu.be This was one of my (Simon) favourite talks from the Maxwell Knight Symposium and we're very grateful to Paul Pearce-Kelly for allowing us to share his slides on the FFON website. The Frightened Face of Nature Paul Pearce-Kelly, ZSL Abstract If Maxwell Knight were writing his prescient Frightened Face of Nature today he would … Continue reading Challenges facing the planet
In today’s wildlife adventures with an iPhone, I want to encourage you to use your smartphone camera (mine’s an iPhone) to reconnect with the natural world. We're constantly hearing how bad smartphones are so let's find a way to use them to help us reconnect with the natural world; technology can help focus our attention and … Continue reading Mallard ducklings
Subsequently published, in a shortened form, in Vet Record - vets urged to promote sensible, safe, feeding of garden birds, using properly tested diets, by John E Cooper 1, Margaret E Cooper 2 and Simon King 3 Feeding bird food to wild birds has never been more popular, but its merits have often been challenged by … Continue reading News: Letter to the Veterinary Record
Did you know that hoverflies mimic wasps and bees but don’t bite or sting? When it comes to mimicry, they’re a sheep in wolf’s and they’re fun to watch up close at this time of the year. I encourage you to have a closer look at these fascinating creatures. I've spent years watching people panic … Continue reading Hoverflies: the sheep in wolf’s clothing
Apologies for the unshaven me; however, I thought I'd record a vlog from my favourite beach (Sandilands) in Lincolnshire. What prompted me? An offshore wind farm and the moon landing anniversary. As humans, we face a massive challenge - we need to somehow contain global warming to prevent the kind of future coming to fruition … Continue reading Offshore wind farms – coming to a beach near you
My priority is reconnecting people with nature - we're all occupied with life's slings and arrows and need an occasional reminder to stop and enjoy what the natural world has to offer. I'm proud to say I work for Haith's - the most conscientious bird food company in Britain and we're an award winning exporter. … Continue reading My day job: standing up for nature and supporting British exports
We (John and Margaret Cooper) enjoyed reading Simon King’s post: “Maxwell Knight mentions the space race in his unpublished manuscript The Frightened Face of Nature and here’s a poignant quote from the same document: Knight’s point was that man should explore; however, why can’t we do these things without destroying”. We should like to add … Continue reading Do the moon landings pose a moral conundrum?
Maxwell Knight mentions the space race in his unpublished manuscript The Frightened Face of Nature and here's a poignant quote from the same document: Knight's point was that man should explore; however, why can't we do these things without destroying natural capital? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AnElf1O8gxI&feature=youtu.be It's right to celebrate the Moon landing - 50 years ago, Apollo … Continue reading If only we could race for space for nature
Continuing my wildlife adventures with my iPhone, I caught this charming Chaffinch calling for its parents yesterday. My gut feeling was that a parent would soon show up, which is exactly what happened; however, I'm frustrated to report that I didn't manage to film the parent (a male Chaffinch) appearing on the very same garden … Continue reading Fledgling Chaffinch calls for parents
I filmed this at the weekend by attaching my iPhone to a sunflower heart bird feeder using an elastic band. Why didn't I think of this before? Within a few moments, our friendly neighbourhood Goldfinch was on the feeder and busy extracting some of Haith's bird foods finest. Isn't it super to get this close … Continue reading Wildlife adventures with an iPhone
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QgdlPIOE0qg I asked my wife to pinch me yesterday as we walked through the gates at Buckingham Palace on our way by foot to The Royal Garden Party. We’d panicked for weeks about the weather (we needn’t have). As we stepped onto the camomile infused lawn - it was certainly infused with tea after several … Continue reading Photos of the Royal Garden Party at Buckingham Palace yesterday
The World Pheasant Association's WPA News, Spring 2019, includes a lengthy report on the Maxwell Knight Symposium (MKS) and looks super. We'd like to thank http://www.pheasant.org.uk for including the three photos (credit Margaret E Cooper) and allowing FFON to share a snippet of their spring newsletter here. Administrators at the WPA have also been kind enough … Continue reading World Pheasant Association cover the Maxwell Knight Symposium in WPA News
There are a few subjects best left off the table at dinner parties - Brexit is one, Climate Change is another. Both have the propensity to split the room equally and leave guests reaching for the after dinner mints before the main course is out of the oven. But are things about to change when … Continue reading Is the climate finally right for a change?
I’ve received an invite to the Royal Garden Party (May 15th) and can’t wait to step through those imposing gates and join Her Majesty for tea and cake in her splendid garden. I wish I could take all readers of the FFON with me. https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=q4OWWMlvHrs&time_continue=29 The invite came via the Lord Chamberlain and was requested … Continue reading The Lord Chamberlain is commanded by Her Majesty to invite me to a Garden Party at Buckingham Palace. (It turns out I’ll be walking in Maxwell Knight’s footsteps…).
Thanks for the generous coverage of the MaxwellKnight Symposium in the IAT Bulletin.
Bulletin of the Amateur Entomologists’ Society Maxwell Knight (1900-1968) was an all-round naturalist and friend of AES founder Leonard Tesch. Maxwell Knight’s writings and his radio and television broadcasts influenced tens of thousands of people, especially youngsters. The Maxwell Knight Commemorative Symposium was held on Saturday 24 November 2018 at Birkbeck College in London, and marked the fiftieth anniversary of … Continue reading Maxwell Knight Symposium – commemorating the original “Nature Detective” and Second World War MI5 agent by Victoria J. Burton (12253)
The report, published in the journal Biological Conservation, says 'intensive agriculture is the main driver of the declines,' particularly the use of 'agro-chemical pollutants' combined with urbanisation and climate change. The scientific review reports that over 40% of insect species are threatened with extinction over the next few decades. Highlights: Over 40% of insect species are threatened … Continue reading Plummeting decline: ‘may lead to the extinction of 40% of the world’s insect species over the next few decades.’
"Our friend Simon King has been a constant source of encouragement and support in the recent investigations into the life and work of Maxwell Knight (MK). Simon offered to take, temporarily to store, and then to catalogue, the contents of Maxwell Knight’s filing cabinet. This was an enormous undertaking; the undertaking was greatly expedited by the enthusiastic … Continue reading John and Margaret Cooper would like to express their personal thanks to Simon King
Looking forward to sharing more from the FFON with you in 2019. Happy New Year. Simon - FFON