Chinese New Year: the animals of the zodiac

Today, 12 February, marks the beginning of Chinese New Year (2021), which celebrates the Year of the Ox – an animal that symbolises strength, loyalty, and determination.

The Chinese zodiac is divided into 12 blocks (also known as houses), each representing one year. Each Chinese New Year is assigned one of 12 animals, which have their own traits and characteristics. Your Chinese zodiac sign depends on when you were born according to the Chinese lunar calendar, which may differ if you were born between 21 January and 20 February (as the new year moves between these dates).

Continue reading “Chinese New Year: the animals of the zodiac”

Get involved: RSPB’s Big Garden Bird Watch has begun!

Today marks the beginning of this year’s RSPB Big Garden Bird Watch.

Over the next three days (until Sunday 31 January 2021), the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds are encouraging people across England, Wales, and Scotland to spend just one hour counting the birds they spot in their garden, from their balcony, or in their local park. So grab yourself a cuppa, as well as maybe a notepad, pen, and some binoculars (if you have them) and make yourself comfy!

Here are just a few of the birds you might see this weekend:

Continue reading “Get involved: RSPB’s Big Garden Bird Watch has begun!”

UK approves EU-banned pesticide, which can be fatal for bees

Earlier this month, it was revealed that the use of a pesticide, which had been banned for outdoor use in the EU and the UK since 2018, has been authorised for emergency use in England. 

Skitterphoto, Pexels.com

The pesticide, which contains a chemical called thiamethoxam, was banned because it can kill bees. However, it has been permitted for emergency use because of a virus threatening the production of sugar. 

Continue reading “UK approves EU-banned pesticide, which can be fatal for bees”

Remembrance Day: The animals that went to war

Approximately 65 million people from around the world fought in the First World War. But did you know that more than 16 million animals had also served by the time the war came to an end on the 11 November 1918?

“For your tomorrow,
We gave our today.”

Kohima epitaph
By John Maxwell Edmonds

Continue reading “Remembrance Day: The animals that went to war”

World Heart Day – fascinating facts about the hearts of the animal kingdom!

Did you know that giraffe have the highest blood pressure of any animal on the planet?

It can measure 280/180 mm Hg, which is twice that usually found in people, and their hearts can beat up to 170 times per minute. Just think how strong their heart must have to beat in order for blood to reach the top of their heads!

Today, 29 September, is World Heart Day. To celebrate, here are five other fascinating facts about hearts within the animal kingdom.

Continue reading “World Heart Day – fascinating facts about the hearts of the animal kingdom!”

The Wildlife Trusts and RHS launch their new campaign: Grow a Secret Garden for Butterflies

From today, 12 March 2020, gardeners across the UK can register their pledges online to dedicate a patch of garden or outdoor space specifically for butterflies and moths in a bid to slow their declining populations.

Continue reading “The Wildlife Trusts and RHS launch their new campaign: Grow a Secret Garden for Butterflies”

Happy New Year… or is it?

On 31 December 2019, millions of people welcomed in the brand new decade with fireworks. However, do you really know the cost of these bright, celebratory displays to our environment?

Continue reading “Happy New Year… or is it?”

Smashing social media… algorithms and all!

Socialmedia_SMSpouses_freelance_writerThis year, I completed a highly sought after social media course called #SMSpouses – a training programme specifically for spouses and partners of British serving personnel. After being selected to be part of the second cohort, I embarked on the 12-week journey not knowing that it would spark a love of creating content and managing social media campaigns on platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn.

During the three-month course, I both expanded on and learnt how to:

  • Create effective and engaging social media campaigns;
  • Design social media adverts;
  • Understand algorithms and analyse engagement statistics;
  • Capture high-quality images;
  • Apply graphic design techniques to make eye-catching visual content;
  • Create professionally edited videos using a smartphone.

If you are a British military spouse or partner and want to find out more, click here.

Join the Puffarazzi to help protect and conserve the threatened “clowns of the sea”

Puffin, credit Chris Taylor
Β© Chris Taylor

One of the most famous bird charity’s in the UK, RSPB (the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds), has launched its latest citizen science photography project – Puffarazzi. Continue reading “Join the Puffarazzi to help protect and conserve the threatened “clowns of the sea””

My World Penguin Day article is now live on Forces.net

animal beaks bird cold
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Today is World Penguin Day and, what with being a (very) soon-to-be military wife, I have gotten involved with Forces Network – where the latest news on the UK Armed Forces and from the wider military world can be found Continue reading “My World Penguin Day article is now live on Forces.net”