Get connected to nature

 Bumblebee flies around cherry blossom at Sheringham Park, Norfolk

We're all part of the natural balance of things, living under the same sky as the trees, plants, animals, and birds. But research shows that while many children and adults are deeply concerned about the future of the natural world they don't always connect to it.

We know that if people fall in love with nature they'll be more likely to look after it. This is why we're encouraging everyone to notice the beauty of the world around them.

Making connections with the natural world is good for us. Taking a moment to notice the shapes of the clouds, listen to the birds or watch butterflies and bees can encourage mindfulness and improve wellbeing. 

Many adults and children don't often make these kinds of positive connections to nature, according to the Noticing Nature report, which we've released in partnership with the University of Derby. But those that do are more likely to say they are happier than the rest of the population.

Noticing Nature report: key findings

Research we've carried out in partnership with the University of Derby highlights widespread concern about the natural world and a lack of connection to nature.

Children's connections to nature

  • 90 per cent infrequently or never watched the sunrise
  • 83 per cent infrequently or never smelled wild flowers
  • 77 per cent infrequently or never listened to birdsong
  • 24 per cent of children often stopped to look at the stars or the moon

Adults' connections to nature 

  • 79 per cent infrequently or never smelled wild flowers
  • 62 per cent either infrequently or never listened to birdsong
  • 57 per cent rarely or never watched the sunrise
  • 27 per cent often watched clouds
  • 38 per cent often stopped to look at the stars or the moon

Concern about the state of nature

  • 73 per cent of children and 81 per cent of adults say they are concerned about the decline in nature 
  • 56 per cent of young people aged 16-24 say they are more worried about nature's decline than they were a year ago.
  • 86 per cent of adults agree that it's important that there are strong laws to protect nature in the UK. 

The Noticing Nature report is a survey of 2,096 adults (aged 16 plus) and 1,051 children (aged between 8 and 15) in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. 

 

 

Find out more Access full report

Get connected to nature

There are many ways that you and your family can experience the moments of joy that nature gives us. Use all your senses to explore the sights, sounds, smells and textures of the natural world around you. 

Make nature part of your daily routine

Your weekly guide to noticing nature  

Spending time in nature not only boosts our connection to the natural world it also helps our wellbeing. Whether you spend 20 seconds or 20 minutes in nature, you can easily make it part of your daily routine. From looking up at the trees to walking barefoot in the grass, we’ve got a beautifully illustrated guide full of ideas to get you started.

Please only carry out the activities that can be done from the safety of your own home.

Anglesey Abbey spring scene

Make a promise for nature 

It has never been more important to look after the forests, rivers, oceans and parks we love to escape to. Together we can make a positive difference to the natural world. So why not join us in making a promise for nature this year? From building a bug hotel to reducing carbon emissions, we’ve got a full list of promises you can make.