Friday Film:: The Importance of Parks to People and Wildlife

Today’s Friday Film is a video from the Brussels Natural History Museum for their exhibition on urban wildlife and features Dr Peter Shepherd from BSG Ecology discussing why parks are important to people and wildlife. He talks about the importance of beautiful plants, the song of birds and other wildlife to people and without mentioning it by name, describes biophilia. The video talks about how our connection to nature in the past was more fundamental because we relied on it for our food, clothing, shelter and fuel, but today while it’s less essential to our survival, parks provide somewhere to connect, relax, exercise and a sense of community.

The Brussels Natural History Museum has a fascinating new permanent exhibition titled BiodiverCITY now.

Who would have thought that a slowworm could be hiding in a corner of…

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Book Review:: Urban Wildlife Habitats: A Landscape Perspective


The book starts with a good overview of ecological processes including the energy pyramid, succession, communities, niches and then moves onto the metropolitan setting which delves into the altered landscape of man. This includes the altered hydrologic cycle, climate and noise. Chapter 4 talks in detail about soils and plant communities, both existing and ideal.

Chapter 5 discusses animal populations and communities and has sections about different types of animals including an extensive detail of birds, mammals, herptiles, fish and invertebrates. Included in the section on birds are descriptions of what birds currently habit urban areas and why they’re attracted and oppositely, what birds are not found in urban areas and why they’re not. The chapter then discusses what elements of the urban environment could be enhanced to bring in the birds not regularly found. Some of the existing elements are open…

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