Whether you are visiting this site as an onlooker, member or prospective member of our Society, we hope you will enjoy and be excited by the descriptions and illustrations of our diverse interests, activities and expertise. We are a relatively small Natural History Society, which relies on the enthusiasm, voluntary efforts and skills of its membership, so newcomers – of all ages and from all kinds of background are always very welcome.
We think that 'natural history' – which simply means 'inquiry into Nature', or, more specifically, the study of life in its natural habitat – is important for everyone, not just a select few. All kinds really do make up the natural world, and it takes all kinds of people to appreciate them from different points of view and in different ways. So, if you in any way find pleasure in exploring any aspect of nature, especially in the Bath area, perhaps you would like to join us as a really great way to share and learn more.
Since I came to Bath in April 1978, to take up a lectureship in the School of Biological Sciences at the University on Claverton Down, where I worked until August 2011, I have lived where I can enjoy views across Bathampton Meadows and the River Avon to Little Solsbury Hill in one direction and towards the popular Brown's Folly Avon Wildlife Trust Reserve in another. We are very fortunate within our 7 mile radius recording area around the centre of Bath to have such a wide variety of localities and habitats for all kinds of life to flourish in.
By joining in with us, you might be surprised and inspired by the variety of life that can be found almost anywhere in and around Bath – with a little knowledge of where to look, how to look and what to look for – not far from or even upon your front doorstep! Some of our members regularly visit 1.7 hectares of land at Lambridge, near the A46/A4 roundabout. So far they've seen 24 kinds of butterflies, many other insects, over 30 common bird species and around 130 kinds of flowering plants including bee and wasp orchids there. Around 15 dragonfly species can be seen along the canal towpath between Bath and Bradford on Avon. Otters and kingfishers frequent the banks and plunge into the waters of the River Avon. Delightful mosses, liverworts, lichens and all manner of 'creepy crawlies' abound on and in our stone walls and in our local woodlands – not to mention fungi (one of my special interests!). We are also discovering, by light trapping (and releasing) the wide range of moth species which inhabit Bath's urban and sub-urban areas. And, of course, there is one wildlife spectacle right in the heart of our city, breeding Peregrine Falcons on the spire of St John's Church!
We are especially keen to work in partnership with other local educational groups and organizations who share our interest in and concern for the natural world, and to find ways of outreaching to members of the public, including young people and families. When you join us, you don't just get a chance to find out about and attend our own varied programme of outdoor and indoor meetings, and receive our Magazine, Newsletter and other publications – you also get to know about what our partners and friends are doing and how to join in with them.