Spring in Strange Times

20 March 2020
Claire Hector

It’s officially the first day of Spring today and with the human hub-bub necessarily stripped back, Sandown Bay’s looking particularly wide and quiet from our window … or so you’d think!

With the door open, we could hear a whole host of spring birdsong, smell and hear the sea, and there’s always the occasional lion roaring (that’s what happens when your neighbours are the Isle of Wight Zoo). Here’s who dropped in yesterday – a female Black redstart!  Not a common visitor here at all so clearly making the most of the opportunity. 

Although loads of us are stuck at home or going it alone, looking at home-schooling too, there’s plenty going on out in the wilder world to keep us occupied.If you can, use your eyes, ears and noses, long lenses or microscopes to keep discovering. Take a look out for what’s moving into the spaces we’ve vacated and are leaving fallow for a bit, from gardens and windowsills to car parks and real parks. Spontaneous #urbanrewilding!  And it’s finally become mainstream government and public health advice to make the most of your local green spaces, with natural resources now being widely recognised as essential both for our physical and our mental well-being. Many open spaces are now free for the duration of the crisis too.

This strange kind of Spring could help us to reimagine our future built environment while it’s become temporarily a bit of a blank canvas for nature. Think how vibrant, thriving, and healthy, our local environment could be.  Coronavirus sits alongside ecological and climate emergencies – a whole host of challenges requiring international, national and local action and resilient, sharing communities to adapt, both in the short-term and the long-term. But it’ll be important to not go back to business as usual. We’re looking at ways to make sure that happens.

We’d love to see your photos, drawings, ID, sounds so that we can create between us a #NewNature Collection and celebrate together sometime soon!  We’ll share some resources as and when we can but in the meantime, here’s an idea to get you started!

Sign up too with our friends @iwatchwildlife to share species records, look out for more tips on #everydaywildlife with @teamwilder and watch our #TheCommonSpace for how the #IsleofWight #arts community will be getting involved too 

#newnature #Spring #wildlife #buildingforbiodiversity #wildlifeonyourdoorstep #nature 

#ecology #art #designfornature #covid_19 #shapingbetterplaces #reasonstobecheerful, #aftercorona #stayathomechallenge