'Tewin Orchard and a Life of Badgers'

Michael Clark, giving the 2017 Gerald Salisbury Memorial Lecture, provided a fascinating overview of his commitment ?  spread across half a century ? to badger conservation and preserving traditional varieties of apple.

Speaking to around 80 members of the HNHS and Welwyn Natural History Society on 22 November, he looked back to a time when badgers lacked legal protection and the authorities showed little interest in preventing illegal trapping and gassing.

Autumn Meeting hears about the conservation value of grazing animals

Legacy Grazing Project Red Poll cattle

More than 75 HNHS members and their friends attended the Society's Autumn Meeting and AGM on Saturday 4 November  at the Affinity Water offices in Hatfield.

One theme to emerge from a series of well-received presentations was the value ? in both conservation and money-saving terms ? of grazing animals used to restore and maintain sensitive habitats in nature reserves. 

John Scivyer 1928 - 2017

John Scivyer

We are sad to report the death of former HNHS Secretary John Scivyer, who died peacefully at home on 26 September aged 88, after a long battle with renal failure.

John is remembered as a kind, generous supporter of the Society's work and ? with his wife Doreen ? a regular attender at meetings until they moved from their home in Potters Bar to Rugby in 2014. He was Hon. Secretary of the HNHS from 1991 to 1999 and also volunteer warden of the Herts and Middlesex Wildlife Trust's nature reserve at Fir and Pond Wood for many years.

Thousands celebrate local wildlife at two-day festival

An estimated 3,000 people came together over the weekend of 29 and 30 July to celebrate the variety of local wildlife.  The Festival of Wildlife in Panshanger Park near Hertford was organised by the Herts and Middlesex Wildlife Trust, in partnership with Hertfordshire Natural History Society, and hosted by site owners Tarmac.

The family-friendly Festival, which was free, featured guided walks and expert talks as well as a whole host of conservation activities.

Have you seen this bug?

The destructive Vine Weevil (Otiorhynchus sulcatus) is about a centimeter long (see picture) and its root-eating grubs are heartily loathed by gardeners, especially strawberry growers.

But the county beetle recorder, Trevor James, would like to hear from HNHS members who have seen it in Hertfordshire and can specify the locality (place name and grid reference to at least 4-figures, please) the year and, if possible, an actual date.

Trevor is close to completing a Hertfordshire beetle atlas ? thought to be the first if its kind mapping a county's Coleoptera ? which HNHS expects to publish next year.