BBC Wildlife Magazine February 2021

BBC Wildlife Magazine is a celebration of the natural world, featuring all the latest discoveries, news and views on wildlife, conservation and environmental issues. With strong broadcasting links, authoritative journalism and award-winning photography, BBC Wildlife Magazine is essential reading for anyone with a passion for wildlife who wants to understand, experience and enjoy nature more.

Pays:
United Kingdom
Langue:
English
Éditeur:
Immediate Media Company London Limited
Fréquence:
Monthly
5,38 €(TVA Incluse)
34,96 €(TVA Incluse)
13 Numéros

dans ce numéro

1 min
down to earth

It was the late lamented Douglas Adams who put it best. “Space,” he wrote, “is big”, showing a mastery of the understatement. “You just won’t believe how vastly, hugely, mind-bogglingly big it is,” he continued. “I mean, you may think it’s a long way down the road to the chemist’s, but that’s just peanuts to space.” And yet in all its infinite vastness, space has as yet (as far as we know) thrown up just one planet capable of creating and sustaining life. And it absolutely teems with the stuff in every conceivable form. As planets go, it’s simply perfect. Indeed, when, 60 years ago, Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin became the first human to travel into space, he looked down from orbit and exclaimed: “I see Earth! It is so beautiful.” The story…

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1 min
the people behind our stories

MICHAEL BRIGHT The former BBC producer takes a look at what the latest Attenborough series has to offer. “The central narrative of this new series is the forces of nature that shape life on Earth,” he says. See p36 SUE WATT With two decades of protecting species under its belt, what does the future hold for African Parks? “Its portfolio is the largest and most ecologically diverse of any conservation organisation in Africa,” says travel writer Sue. See p54 ALEJANDRO PRIETO The wildlife photographer has been documenting the negative impacts of the wall along the Mexico border. “There are many other ways to control immigration without disturbing the natural world,” he says. See p62 DAVID LINDO Swapping skyscrapers for icebergs, Urban Birder David encountered the hardy species capable of surviving unforgiving conditions in Antarctica. “It was all…

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4 min
wild month

1 | ROOK Caws for celebration Long before winter is out, new life stirs in still-bare treetops. Come February, mistle thrushes are whistling their mournful, far-carrying song over and over from the loftiest twigs, great spotted woodpeckers are drumming on resonant dead wood to announce their territory and, safe in their dreys, female grey squirrels are nursing their first young of the year. Rooks, too, begin breeding remarkably early. Their rookeries in the crowns of tall oak and ash (once, elm was the tree of choice) are already a hive of activity in February, as established pairs bring sticks to patch up their tatty nests or try to pinch them from neighbours. Rooks mate for life – rare among British birds, but the norm among our corvids – and devoted partners will sit…

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3 min
hidden britain

NICK BAKER Reveals a fascinating world of wildlife that we often overlook. A glance into a pond on a late-winter day may reveal the first stirrings of aquatic life. At this time of year, the water is clearer, with fewer plankton, algae and plants (such as duckweed), making the twitching masses of water fleas much more obvious. Water fleas are crustaceans – it is their proportions (no more than 5mm long) and jerky movements that give them their common name. Of the UK’s 80 or so species, Daphnia pulex is the most common and widespread. Have a close look at one under a microscope or under hand lens, and you’ll see a beautiful, delicate, glassy animal. A single compound eye stares back at you, long feathery antennae (used for swimming) flick out on…

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1 min
fighting infection

The filter-feeding lifestyle of Daphnia puts them in contact with a range of harmful fungi, but they are rather good at self-medicating. This, combined with the species’ transparency, means they are great for studying the effects of disease. Recent research has revealed that Daphnia use anti-fungal chemicals to combat their infections. These chemicals could one day be used to protect humans and wildlife, such as amphibians and bats whose populations are being ravaged by fungal-borne diseases.…

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3 min
mike dilger’s wildlife watching

Rocky shores are among a select group of habitats remaining in the British Isles that can still be considered largely free from the impacts of human (mis)management. Constantly transitioning between terrestrial, marine and ‘somewhere in between’, according to the state of the tide, the raw and wild nature of the rocky ribbon encircling large parts of our coast ensures this is not a habitat for wildlife best described as faint of heart. Substantial sections of Britain’s northern and western coasts are primarily rocky by nature. These hard shores are not just directly impacted by the tide, since the levels of inundation and duration of exposure will also greatly influence temperature, moisture and salinity levels. In terms of topography, the gradient of any rocky coastline will depend on its geological genesis and…

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