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BBC Wildlife Magazine

BBC Wildlife Magazine November 2020

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.

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United Kingdom
Immediate Media Company London Limited
13 Issues

in this issue

1 min.
shelter from the storm

It had been a perfectly pleasant stroll along the side of the canal when the snow hit me. Looking up, white flakes floated down, and yet just a few yards up the pavement, it was a bright, clear morning. I knew this spot well, as I stopped to watch the peregrines on the top of the old warehouse most mornings on my daily commute, so it didn’t take me long to twig that my snowstorm was actually a shower of feathers, as a falcon plucked away at its breakfast high above. These inner-city wildlife encounters are worth their weight in gold – especially as, this year more than ever before, we’ve been so focused on the wildlife on our doorsteps. So, this issue, we decided to take a whirlwind tour of…

1 min.
the people behind our stories

HILARY BRADT Travelling to Socotra saw the author encounter some weird and wonderful species: “Several trees are found only on Socotra, giving the landscape its distinctive appearance.” See p52 ROZ KIDMAN COX A long-time judge of the Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition, Roz tells us what makes an eye-catching entry. “It is fascinating how the impression an image makes can grow with looking,” she says. See p70 STEPHEN MOSS Naturalist Stephen followed in the slipstream of swallows, from Somerset to South Africa. “Like all long-distance migrants, the swallow is highly vulnerable to changes in the weather and shifts in climate,” he says. See p72 HAMZA YASSIN Living on the west coast of Scotland, the CBeebies presenter tells us what he admires about the local white-tailed eagles: “This species was here way before us, and should be…

1 min.
in focus

Cone sweet cone Plastic pollution is a real problem for marine species – reports of carrier bags being removed from the stomachs of beached whales, not to mention mircroplastics being ingested by all sorts of sea life, are far too familiar. However, this common lobster appears to have discovered a way to use our castoffs to its advantage. Concealing itself inside a discarded traffic cone, the cunning crustacean has found the perfect hideout, enabling it to survey the seabed in safety. White-out Apart from the glint of a golden eye, this snowy owl blends in beautifully with its wintery surroundings, as it takes to the air across the Canadian tundra. Far from being a night owl, these birds are diurnal and rely on their camouflage to avoid detection while hunting – lemmings are…

4 min.
wild month

1 | ATLANTIC SALMON Epic struggle Surging rivers in northern Britain, Wales and Ireland, swollen with autumn rain, witness one of our greatest wildlife dramas. Rising water levels are a cue for Atlantic salmon to move upstream – traditionally between September and December – the penultimate stage in an odyssey whose climax is spawning. These fish are the handful of survivors that dodged bigger mouths and fishing fleets to grow strong in cold Arctic waters, as far north as Greenland and the Barents Sea, a fabulously rich region, which writer Charles Rangeley-Wilson has called the “Harrod’s food hall of the oceans”. After several years here, many salmon return to their natal river catchment, even the same part of it. Maybe they are guided by magnetic particles in the ‘lateral line’ along each…

3 min.
hidden britain

NICK BAKER Reveals a fascinating world of wildlife that we often overlook. An eerie bark echoes in the night. If I tell you that the mysterious creature in question sports recurved fangs, it might conjure up a mental image of something out of a vampire horror flick. Anything large with sharp fangs must be after a bit of flesh, right? Not in this case. You’ve actually just heard our smallest deer – a Reeves’s muntjac, Muntiacus reevesi. The muntjac’s bark is definitely worse than its bite, because, like all deer, it is a herbivore. As it happens, most other species of deer in Britain are also surprisingly vocal, especially during the rut. But the muntjac is one of the loudest and most consistent. It breeds in any month, and females can conceive…

1 min.
dinky but destructive

For both gardeners and many conservationists, this deer is public enemy number one. It has high reproductive potential, and one particular problem is its penchant for browsing out low growth, including much-loved woodland wildflowers such as bluebells and primroses. There is also a suggestion it might be implicated in the degradation of nightingale habitat. The species appears to be spreading from its original range in south-east England at an alarming rate, causing ecological upset in its wake.…