Wild Marlow News

  • July  2020

    Red Kites have been in the news a lot recently, but whether you love them or hate them, here is some advice on how we can help them and enjoy them, rather than fearing them 💚

    Red Kites are one of the greatest conservation success stories of the 20th century, being reintroduced between 1989-1994 after becoming extinct due to persecution at the end of the 19th century. Although they are a daily sight in Marlow, there very few places in England where they can be seen in such numbers.

    However at this time of year, some people become fearful of the Red Kites, as this normally timid scavenging bird, takes more risks as it tries to rear its young. There have been reports of picnics and small items (mistaken for food) being taken. This can be very frightening at the time.

    In order to help these birds, the RSPB and other groups advise people not to feed Red Kites in their gardens. This will prevent them from becoming reliant on regular human hand-outs, as well as encouraging them to disperse further throughout England. Also sometimes the food left out for them gets dropped in neighbouring gardens, causing H&S issues for pets and small children. While some may enjoy watching these magnificent birds swoop in to collect food, your neighbours may not! This practice also means the birds become used to scavenging in densely populated residential areas, where they cannot always tell the difference between what is left out for them intentionally and what is not.

    During the spring and summer months, when many of us like to venture outside for a picnic, we suggest you take the usual precautions as you would protecting your chips from gulls by the seaside. Red Kites are hungry and opportunistic, so if you leave it out on display for them, they will probably have a go. They are not trying to attack humans or pets, they are just trying to eat and rear their young. So keep an eye out for them above, cover up food when not attended and do not leave the scraps behind.

    We hope you find this information useful and hope it helps us to live happily and safely with these wonderful birds 💚

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  • June  2020

    Martin Robinson from Wild Marlow gave an interview on BBC London News on Monday 29th June, about the Red Kites in Marlow and what we can do to help them. 

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  • April  2020

    The Wild Marlow Gardens Campaign, launched in April 2020, aims to encourage residents in Marlow and the surrounding villages to help welcome wildlife into their gardens.Domestic gardens, no matter what size, are mini nature reserves and provide vital corridors for wildlife to thrive. There are an estimated 24 million gardens in the UK so how they are cared for can make a huge difference. Our gardens form a vast living landscape.

    Gardening for wildlife doesn’t necessarily mean leaving it to grow into a jungle, but there are many small things you can do to make your garden accessible to all. The Wild Marlow Gardens Campaign focuses on 4 key areas:
    Garden management – e.g. chemical free, highways, composting
    Wildlife food features – e.g. nectar rich planting, fruits and berries, feeders, herbs
    Wildlife shelters – e.g. boxes, log piles, bug hotels, long grass
    Water features – e.g. ponds, bogs, water butts

    By making small changes in your garden you will be helping to improve the health and biodiversity of our local area.
    With the campaign, Wild Marlow will award gold, silver and bronze award certificates to those who satisfy three different levels of criteria.
    The gold certificate holders, if also Wild Marlow Members, will be eligible to purchase a Wild Marlow Blue Heart for just £10, to display in their garden or wildlife area. The Wild Marlow Gardens Campaign supports the national BLUE campaign, which has been running since 2014, promoting the rewilding of gardens and other open spaces across the UK.
    Wild Marlow will be posting information on what you can do via our website, Facebook Page and Facebook Group.

    To take part in the campaign, download the guidance forms and submission sheet on our website www.wildmarlow.org.uk. Make the required changes in your garden and submit the form to us online or via email. Entry is free to all and we encourage everyone to take part. If you have queries or need advice, please do email us contact@wildmarlow.org.uk.

    Away from domestic gardens, Wild Marlow hopes to be able to offer larger Wild Marlow blue hearts for display in recognition of wildlife friendly environments and practices in other open spaces such as parks, road verges, churchyards, school grounds and commercial properties.

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  • April  2020

    30 Wild Marlow Days - April 2020

    Our daily posts have been moved to here https://www.wildmarlow.org.uk/wmd.php

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  • March  2020

    The Wild Marlow Team spent an evening stuffing 2,500 envelopes with native wildflowers seeds, ready to be given to every Marlow primary school child.

    We hope the gift will encourage children to plants the seeds, watch them grown and see which species use them for food and shelter.

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  • March  2020

    Wild Marlow, Marlow Wombles and Softcat with other employees from Globe Business Park, spent a very productive hour on 4th March, litter picking the area. There was great enthusiasm considering the weather and a large amount of litter was collected. It's is really encouraging that so many people and businesses care about our local environment and take steps to look after it. Thanks everyone!

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  • March  2020

    Wild Marlow along with Bisham Nest Box Group, went along to 3rd Marlow Guides on 4th March to provide a Bird Box Building Workshop. The girls showed some excellent tool skills and an amazing 16 nest boxes were built. The Great Tits, Blue Tits and Robins will be pleased. We loved hearing about everyone's favourite native wildlife too! 

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  • March  2020

    Wild Marlow's Nick went along to Spinfield Primary School to give an assembly to the children. It was very well received and the kids really enjoyed learning more about wildlife in and around Marlow. They especially enjoyed seeing the newts and frogspawn he took along for the morning.

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  • March  2020

    Wild Marlow managed to deliver 2,175 packets of native wildflower seeds to all the primary school children in Marlow just before the schools closed. There were also a further 300 sent home with pre-school children. We do hope the children enjoy planting these seeds with their families and witness the wildlife that will benefit from them. Leftover packets were then included in some Seed1/Marlow Green food box deliveries recently. A lovely little suprise for some!

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  • February  2020

    Wild Marlow went along to join The Henley Toad Patrol on Saturday 1st February, to help with the installation of the barrier on the Marlow to Henley Road, saving many lives.

    Nick says “It’s been an education already. The barrier stops the toads from being squashed on the road. The toads stop and sit and wait at the barrier. Volunteers collect them every evening to get them lifted over the busy A4155 road so they can walk onwards to the pond near the river. They lifted about 7000 last year, effectively saving thousands. These lovely creatures only come out at dusk and can walk up to 5km to spawn and then return to their ground burrows to feed. It’s not just toads but also newts so if you would like to see and handle them do join up and as the team tell me, have some fun in the process.”

    Did you know?
    Our cities and towns pose a threat to common toads; busy roads often block migration paths, making it difficult for them to reach their breeding ponds. It is estimated that 20 tonnes of unlucky toads are killed on the UK’s roads every year. If more than 1,000 toads are known to hop across a road in a particular spot, it is dubbed a 'toad crossing'......”

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  • February  2020

    Wild Marlow were warmly welcomed by the regular stall holders at the Transition Town Marlow Market on Saturday 1st February. The sun encouraged lots of visitors, who were treated to a stunning snowdrop and crocus display on The Causeway, to the bustling market and associated Repair Café. Many were keen to talk to us about who we are and what we do. We signed up some new members who were keen to support us and attend some of our upcoming events. We are also pleased to meet our new MP Joy Morrissey, a fan of bird watching, who was so supportive of Wild Marlow she signed up as a Member. We hope to welcome her and her family to our How to Help our Feathered Friends evening on Wednesday 12th February.

    Joy will be holding regular surgeries in Marlow, where she is happy to discuss all things green within her constituency, so do make an appointment and raise your concerns and hopes for wildlife and the environment.

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  • February  2020

    On Wednesday 12th February, Wild Marlow hosted an evening event on How to Help our Feathered Friends.

    First we were joined by Paul Warham from Bisham Barn Owl Group, who gave a really fascinating talk about the species of Owls we can see in our area (Tawny, Barn & Little) and the different types of nest boxes they prefer, with some particularly gorgeous photos. He even threw us a curve ball with some Kestrel chicks! We learned about the habitats required for Barn Owls to thrive and how easily they can be affected by weather, vole populations, loss of habitat and human interaction. There were some fascinating facts and figures on the monitoring project Bisham Barn Owl Group are undertaking in the Middle Thames area, providing some vital information on the breeding and dispersal within the area. One of the leading Barn Owl projects in the UK. For more information on the Bisham Barn Owl Group www.bishambarnowlgroup.blogspot.com.

    Next up was Bob Keene from Bisham Nest Box Group, talking about the great work they do locally, building and installing wildlife nest boxes of all shapes and sizes. They also help with fun family friendly workshops for people to make their own boxes from kits to take home. They have many boxes available for sale, so have a look at their website if you think you have the suitable space to install a box for garden birds, raptors, swifts, hedgehogs & bats. www.bnbg.org.uk

    Finally we were treated to an entertaining and interesting talk from Jan Stannard, from Maidenhead, Marlow & Cookham Swift Group. The Swift is often unobserved, as they fly so fast and high and sometimes confused with Swallows and House Martins. However they can frequently be seen in and around Marlow from April to August, having 'screaming parties', especially at dusk. Their numbers are in fast decline due to loss of habitat as a result of development and building refurbishment. Swifts love to nest in the eaves and roofs of buildings, so consider installing a nesting box to help prevent further decline. These lovely birds travel to the UK every year from Africa, so would appreciate a safe and cosy place to breed.

     

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  • February  2020

    Martin from Wild Marlow was interviewed on Marlow FM's Mid Morning Matters Show on Wednesday 19th February. He spoke about Wild Marlow, who we are and what we do, whilst talking about our exciting upcoming events. He also gave some great tips on how to encourage wildlife into your gardens including digging a pond, feeding birds and installing nest boxes.

    You can listen to the show via Marlow FM's website www.marlowfm.co.uk/listenagain

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  • February  2020

    Verity from Wild Marlow went along to meet the new MP for Marlow, Joy Morrissey MP at her Marlow surgery on Friday 21st February. They discussed some wider environmental issues such as HS2 and the new Environment and Agriculture Bills, but also spoke about the work Wild Marlow are doing in the local area as well as some of the upcoming events. If you have any concerns regarding local environmental issues, Joy is keen to hear from her constituents and is supportive of "green" initiatives. She even name dropped Wild Marlow in Parliament recently (https://twitter.com/joymorrissey/status/1225407146109685760) and has signed up as a Member, so you may well bump into her at one of our events.

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  • February  2020

    On Sunday 23rd February Wild Marlow went to support Transition Town Marlow with the expansion of their Community Orchard in Seymour Park. Lots of volunteers turned up to help with the preparation, digging, planting, naming, pruning, etc. It was a great fun morning, if a little windy. Can't wait to see the fruits of our labour!

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  • January  2020

    Wild Marlow held their first Bird Box Workshop on Saturday 11th January, with the help from Bisham Nest Box Group https://www.bnbg.org.uk/. The event was very well attended by all ages and a total of 31 boxes were made on the day, with 6 box kits taken away to be made at home. What fantastic news for the garden birds of Marlow.

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  • January  2020

    On New Years Day morning Wild Marlow were very warmly welcomed to the Winter Birding Walk at The Spade Oak Nature Reserve In Little Marlow, hosted by East Berks RSPB Group. Although the weather was overcast, it remained dry and an impressive 61 different species of bird were spotted. You can read the full report here - http://www.eastberksrspb.org.uk/calendar/60/322-Little-Marlow-Gravel-Pits-2020-br-New-Years-Day-morning-walk/.
    Check out their list of other outings for this year, to improve your birding knowledge, everyone is welcome in this friendly group.

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