As we mark the close of another year and thoughts turn to resolutions, we're asking you to make a pledge for wildlife alongside the normal drink, food and writing letter resolutions we make year on year. There are little things that we can all do in our everyday lives that really can contribute towards protecting our world and our wildlife and giving future generations a chance to enjoy what we protect for them.
So here are 5 New Years Resolution suggestions that we think you could really stick to and help to save the world, even doing just one would be great.
1. Feed the birds.What a simple but wonderful place to start. Our garden birds are depleted in numbers as they lose more habitat and more food sources, with insect numbers also in decline. We've had many conversations this year about how much quieter it is in gardens, far less birdsong, buzzing, and general wildlife noise. The contribution we can make by putting up bird feeders and birdhouses can be a real difference in bird numbers. Wonderful for us as well as we get to enjoy the sight of birds in our gardens.
2. Be pollinator friendly.This has to be one of the easiest resolutions you can make, a million times easier than going to the gym every other hour! There are many ways to be more pollinator-friendly and a lot of them only involve tiny changes to your normal routine. We've got a great blog post full of top tips for making a bee-friendly, and in turn other pollinators, friendly, garden - which you can read here. By doing things like signing up for the Great British Bee Count this year and considering what you plant and how you tend your garden you can be a true wildlife hero!
3. Be a rubbish warrior.There's increasing awareness and alarm about plastics in our oceans and the harm to wildlife. Again there are little changes we can all undertake in our daily lives to make a real difference here. If you're lucky enough (like us) to live near the coast or to visit it regularly then get into the habit of taking a bag with you and collecting a few items of rubbish as you enjoy the beach. Initiatives like #2MinuteBeachClean and #Take3ForTheSea teach us that if we all do a little bit we make a big difference. And it's not just the beach, the rubbish on our streets and pavements can all lead to harm for wildlife, take a bag with you wherever you go and change the mindset that someone else should pick it up. We can all be rubbish warriors.
4. Get to know your wildlife.At Green&Blue we're loving learning more and more each day about our pollinators and other wildlife. It becomes easier to protect something when you understand it better and when you have more knowledge. So read up, check out the wildlife trusts for guides to wildlife, read blogs by experts like Brigit Strawbridge, follow people on social media who post information and interesting tips, people like Seedball and Little Green Space over on Twitter, grow your awareness and the other resolutions will become even easier to achieve. (For bees we can't recommend a Field guide to Bees by Steven Falk highly enough.)
5. Be a wildlife hero.
If you do all of the above, plus a little bit more, then we're calling you a wildlife hero. More? We hear you cry. Well yes, once all the above become just a part of our normal life there's more you can do. Support a wildlife organisation like the Wildlife trusts or Buglife and get involved in their work. Campaign for protection for wildlife, look out for petitions where you can add your voice and be heard. Sign up for things like the Great British Bee Count and bird and butterfly counts that also take place throughout the year, this kind of data gathering is really vital in building up a picture of our wildlife throughout the country.
So make a New Years resolution that could really make a big difference this year, to you, to our wildlife and to the world.