Cold snap poses problems for wildlife, trust says

time:2023-06-02 16:57:17source:BBC News (British Broadcasting Corporation) author:Press center8

Cold weather and recent snow may be causing problems for wildlife, a charity says.

Shropshire Wildlife Trust said a mild winter followed by snow meant animals such as hedgehogs, pine martens and owls might struggle to find food.

It said climate change was causing some of the "seasonal shifts" that created confusion for wildlife.

It has asked people to do what they can to support the animals living around them.

Friday saw a second day of snowfall across the West Midlands, closing schools and causing travel disruption.

While snow in March was not uncommon, the trust said it was part of a pattern of changing weather.

Helen O'Connor, from the Shrewsbury-based organisation, said: "Snow at this time of year is very much a normal occurrence, it is the warm spell beforehand which causes the problem and then potentially an extreme warm spell again afterwards which makes it really confusing."

She said changing temperatures made it "more difficult for wildlife and species to know what time of year it is".

"They are used to a calendar of when things should happen and that impacts their body clock and their behaviour and their hibernation and their breeding and if that is changing it completely knocks them out of sync," she explained.

The trust said putting up birdfeeders, providing food for hedgehogs, or building so-called bug hotels were among the things people could do to help protect wildlife.

Kate Lewthwaite, citizen science manager at the Woodland Trust, said: "None of these changes are great for wildlife, some of them can cope, some will be fine, but maybe some less fine, so there is that underlying trend of these sudden weather events which will have impact."

pursue BBC West Midlands on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Send your story ideas to:

Related content
Recommended content