British natural history

If you are a city-dweller, you might be forgiven for thinking Britain is sparse in wildlife. But you’d be mistaken – Britain is teeming with wildlife, and in fact, many species flourish in an urban setting. Did you know peregrine falcons can be found in London and that Britain is home to 50 per cent of the world’s bluebells? How much do you really know about the wildlife on your doorstep? Explore our content and fill in the gaps.

  • Banded demoiselle, the UK’s largest damselfly on a nettle
    UK Biodiversity Portal

    Find out about UK biodiversity and how you can help to preserve it by identifying local species, taking part in wildlife surveys, and much more.

  • Bluebell - Hyacinthoides non-scripta
    Exploring British wildlife: bluebells

    Are bluebells flowering earlier than they used to? Help us find out by taking part in the Museum's bluebell survey. Discover what past surveys have revealed about the spread of non-native bluebells.

  • Oak leaves in the Museum's Wildlife Garden
    British habitats

    The British Isles have a wide range of habitats, from low-lying fens to open heathlands and hundreds of miles of hedgerow. Find out about their history and the threats they face.

  • Trees in Edinburgh
    Urban tree survey

    Identify a tree today. Help us learn what species are growing where in the UK by telling us about the trees in your streets, parks and especially in your gardens.

  • Bladder wrack, Fucus vesiculosus
    Big Seaweed Search

    Take a walk along the coast and help us monitor the effects of climate change and invasive species on the UK's seaweeds.

  • Nature societies online
    Nature Groups Near You

    Find wildlife and natural history societies, recording schemes and events to match your interests. Search our UK directory to discover what’s happening near you.

  • Sea heath, Frankenia laevis
    Coastal wildlife walk video

    Join Museum botanist Fred Rumsey as he takes a walk along the south coast of Britain and introduces you to a host of plants surviving in extreme conditions.

  • Fossil
    Earth lab datasite

    Find out about fossils, minerals and rocks discovered in your local area with the Earth Lab database.

  • Clouded yellow butterfly
    Bug forum

    Ask questions and share identification tips about all types of British bugs, from bees to beetles and wasps to woodlice.  Museum insect-experts are on hand to answer your questions.

Visit our Centre for UK Biodiversity in the Darwin Centre
butterfly

Found a new plant in your garden, an odd creature in your house, or a strange fossil on the beach? Bring it in to us and one of our Identification and Advisory staff will help identify it.

Centre for UK Biodiversity
Visit the online ID forum