The long sunny days and short nights of June abound with wildlife. It’s a time when the baby birds are fledging, learning to fly and preparing to leave the nest. If you are very lucky you may hear the call of a Turtle Dove, one of the rarest birds in the UK, which we can see in our woodlands and hedgerows. It’s also the last chance to hear the cuckoo before it migrates to Africa.
The sun also brings out the butterflies, including the peacock and red admiral, and June is a great month for moths as well, so if you are sitting out on a warm evening, look out for the Elephant Hawk moth and other striking flyers.
Wild flowers on show this month include the foxglove, red campion, devil’s bit scabious and greater knapweed, which grow in damp meadows and on woodland rides. Fields are full of daisies and buttercups and – if you’re lucky – poppies. Poppy seeds can lie dormant in the soil for years and only spring to life when they are disturbed, which is why a field with suddenly erupt with the flowers after appearing to lie fallow. Wild rose, wild honeysuckle and elder are in bloom – elderflower cordial is a forager’s favourite, and you can find a recipe here from the RSPB.