What wildlife events are on in January?

Discover the amazing wildlife and nature events happening around the UK this month, including activities for children and families, free events, and more!

Redwing feeding on rowan berries in garden. © David Tipling/Getty

Looking for something to do this January? We’ve collated nature and wildlife events happening around the country this month, including museum exhibitions, scientific talks and more.

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Please note that this is a selection of events taking place around the UK. Check out your local nature reserves and conservation groups to find out what other activities are being held in your area. Events are listed by country (England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland), and then by alphabetically by county. 

What national events are taking places this month?

Big Garden Birdwatch

House sparrows on seed feeder. © Ben Hall/RSPB Images
House sparrows on seed feeder. © Ben Hall/RSPB Images
  • When: Saturday 26 – Monday 28 January
  • What: Now in its 40th year, the Big Garden Birdwatch is the largest garden wildlife citizen science project. Participants spend one hour watching and recording the birds in their garden or local green space, and send their results to the RSPB. In the last 40 years, 130 millions bird have been counted in more than 8 millions hours of monitoring.
  • Where: your garden or local green space
  • Organised by: RSPB
  • Is this event free? Yes
  • Is this event suitable for children? Yes
  • Is this event accessible? Yes, can be done from home or in a local green space
  • Website: Big Garden Birdwatch

Win a Big Garden Birdwatch starter pack and RSPB binoculars!

To celebrate the 40th year of the Big Garden Birdwatch, the RSPB have teamed up with BBC Wildlife to offer our readers the chance to win a special anniversary kit worth £170, including a pair of the RSPB’s Avocet 8×42 binoculars. 

Two runners-up will win a feeder and bird seed. Closing date is 23.59 on Thursday 31 January 2019. 

Find out more and enter.

 

rspb-comp

EVENTS IN ENGLAND

What events are on in Bedfordshire this month?

Managing reserves for tomorrow’s climate

Chalk hill blues butterflies. © Richard Revels/The Wildlife Trust BCN
Chalk hill blues butterflies. © Richard Revels/The Wildlife Trust BCN
  • When: Wednesday 30 January, 7.30 – 9pm
  • What: An illustrated talk by Dr Andrew Bladon which will take us on a journey to discover how climate change and human-induced habitat loss will affect the future of UK butterflies.
  • Where: Dunstable Community fire station, Bedfordshire
  • Organised by: Wildlife Trust for Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Northamptonshire
  • Is this event free? No, £3 per person
  • Is this event suitable for children? No.
  • Is this event accessible? Yes.
  • Website: Managing reserves for tomorrow’s climate

What events are on in Cambridgeshire this month?

Bridging Binaries: Pilot LGBTQ+ tours

Penguin for Polar and Zoology Museums_0
  • When: Sunday 20 January – Sunday 17 February, 3pm
  • What: From same sex behaviour among penguins to eroticism in the ancient world, explore the spectrum of identities that exist across time, place and culture in Cambridge collections. Join our volunteer guides to discover their personal selection of fascinating stories of non-normative gender and sexual identities through a range of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer related objects.
  • Where: Museum of Zoology, Cambridge
  • Organised by: Museum of Zoology, Cambridge
  • Is this event free? Yes. Advance booking is advisable.
  • Is this event accessible? All of the Museums and tours are wheelchair accessible. Volunteer guides are happy to adjust the tours to meet the needs of the group on the day.
  • Website: Bridging Binaries: Pilot LGBTQ+ tours

Zoology Late: Winter Escape!

Zoology Late in the gallery © University of Cambridge/Mike Cameron
Zoology Late in the gallery © University of Cambridge/Mike Cameron
  • When: Wednesday 30 January, 6 – 9pm
  • What: Make like a swallow and escape the UK winter cold at the Museum of Zoology. Hear about the science of animal migrations, and explore warmer climes with arts and trails for grown ups.
  • Where: Museum of Zoology, Cambridge
  • Organised by: Museum of Zoology, Cambridge
  • Is this event free? Free. No need to book.
  • Is this event suitable for children? No. This event is suitable for ages 18+
  • Is this event accessible? All of the Museums and tours are wheelchair accessible.
  • Website: Zoology Late: Winter Escape!

What events are on in Cumbria this month?

Wildlife Media in Exhibition

Wildlife Media in Exhibition
  • When: Monday 14 January – Friday 8 February (excluding Sundays), 10am – 4pm
  • What: A showcase of talent from the BA (Hons) Wildlife Media degree students at the University of Cumbria, who photograph and film the natural world. This exhibition emulates the work of existing practitioners, highlights conservation issues and explores our relationship with the natural world through photography.
  • Where: Vallum Gallery, University of Cumbria, Carlisle
  • Organised by: University of Cumbria
  • Is this event free? Free.
  • Is this event suitable for children? Yes.
  • Is this event accessible? Yes – contact organisers for details.
  • Website: Wildlife Media in Exhibition

What events are on in Devon this month?

Monty Halls – My family and the Galápagos and the Freedom Trails

Monty Halls shaping cultures and crafting civilisations
  • When: Wednesday 16 January, 6.30pm
  • What: Marine biologist and travel writer Monty Halls looks at how significant movement of people and animals around the world has shaped cultures and crafted civilisations. The talk will be illustrated by unseen footage from the Galapagos and throughout Europe, as well as stunning images taken over thirty years of global travel.
  • Where: Royal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery, Queen Street, Exeter
  • Organised by: Royal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery
  • Is this event free? No. £18 per person
  • Is this event suitable for children? Not aimed at children, but would be suitable for older children.
  • Is this event accessible? Partially. Wheelchair access and limited bookable blue badge parking. More details. 
  • Website: Monty Halls – my family and the Galápagos and the Freedom Trails

What events are on in Dorset this month?

The wildlife of a working forest

  • When: Wednesday 16 January, 7pm
  • What: Mike Read regards the New Forest as his “local patch” as he lives on the edge of this unique location. It is Britain’s smallest National Park and is under pressure from the huge number of annual visitors. This talk will be illustrated by Mike’s own superb photographs, and promises to be both entertaining and informative.
  • Where: Digby Memorial Church Hall, Sherborne, Dorset
  • Organised by: 
  • Is this event free? No. £2.50 per person
  • Is this event suitable for children? Possibly – contact organisers for details
  • Is this event accessible? Yes, the hall is wheelchair accessible.
  • Website: The wildlife of a working forest

Beginners Birdwatching

Avocets. © Andy Hay/RSPB Images
Avocets. © Andy Hay/RSPB Images
  • When: Consecutive Thursdays 31 January – 14 February, 10am – 12noon
  • What: Get to grips with bird identification. Join the wildlife guides for an introduction to birding, followed by a walk around the reserve searching for birds in the hedgerows and harbour, putting your new found skills to the test.
  • Where: RSPB Arne nature reserve, Wareham, Dorset
  • Organised by: RSPB
  • Is this event free? No. £45 per person (20% discount for RSPB members), which includes all three sessions and a hot beverage after each session.
  • Is this event suitable for children? Possibly – contact organiser for details
  • Is this event accessible? Possibly – contact organiser for details
  • Website: Beginners Birdwatching

What events are on in Essex this month?

Bittern Roost Watch

Bittern in Lea Valley. © Mark Braun
Bittern in Lea Valley. © Mark Braun
  • When: Sunday 20 January, 3.45pm – dusk
  • What: An opportunity to spot Lee Valley’s most secretive winter visitor. Once widespread in the UK, Bittern numbers dramatically declined and they became extinct primarily due to the widespread loss of reedbed habitat. Conservation work nationally has seen them return and increase in number. Each year they come to Lee Valley Regional Park to over-winter and the Bittern Information Point is one of the best places in the country to get up-close views of this elusive bird.
  • Where: River Lee Country Park, Fishers Green Car Park, Waltham Abbey
  • Organised by: River Lee Country Park
  • Is this event free? Yes
  • Is this event suitable for children? Possibly – contact organiser for details
  • Is this event accessible? Possibly – contact organiser for details
  • Website: Bittern Roost Watch

What events are on in Greater Manchester this month?

Red List Insects: Martin Wilson exhibition

  • When: Saturday 26 January – June
  • What: Photographer Martin Wilson exhibits his macro images of endangered, threatened and extinct insects, taken from the Manchester Museum collection. These spectacular creatures have been photographed at 15 times their original size. The exhibition aims to raise awareness of the UK insects featured on the IUCN Red List.
  • Where: The Manchester Museum, The University of Manchester
  • Organised by: The Manchester Museum
  • Is this event free? Yes
  • Is this event suitable for children? Yes
  • Is this event accessible? Yes – contact organiser for details
  • Website: Red List Insects: Martin Wilson exhibition

What events are on in Lancashire this month?

Squirrel monitoring workshop

  • When: Saturday 19 January
  • What: Monitoring red and grey squirrel populations is an important part of protecting red squirrels in north Merseyside and west Lancashire. Come along to learn more about the different monitoring techniques and have a go at putting them into practice. The workshop will consist of an indoor presentation followed by an outdoor session to demonstrate the survey techniques. This will all be on flat ground but please wear suitable outdoor clothing for the weather.
  • Where: Coronation Park, Crosby, Liverpool
  • Organised by: Lancashire Wildlife Trust
  • Is this event free? Yes, but advance booking is essential as places are limited
  • Is this event suitable for children? No
  • Is this event accessible? Possible – contact organiser for details
  • Website: Squirrel monitoring workshop

Annual Christmas Tree Planting 2019

Planting Christmas trees in the sand dunes. © Brian Jones
Planting Christmas trees in the sand dunes. © Brian Jones
  • When: Tuesday 29 – Thursday 31 January, 10am – 3pm
  • What: Come on down and help Lancashire Wildlife Trust to buy your old Christmas trees and help stabilise the sand dunes on the Flyde Coast. The donated Christmas trees are partially buried in a line in front of the existing dunes, and over time the sand accumulates around the trees and new embryo dunes start to build up. Since the project started they have seen up to a 40m increase in width across the St Anne’s dune system.
  • Where: North Beach Car Park, St Annes, Lancashire
  • Organised by: Lancashire Wildlife Trust
  • Is this event free? Yes
  • Is this event suitable for children? Yes
  • Is this event accessible? Not suited for those with limited mobility or wheelchair users
  • Website: Annual Christmas Tree Planting 2019

What events are on in London this month?

Life in the Dark exhibition

Life in the dark exhibition. © Trustees of the Natural History Museum
Life in the dark exhibition. © Trustees of the Natural History Museum
  • When: Until Sunday 24 February 2019
  • What: Explore the extraordinary diversity of animals that survive and thrive in worlds without light. From the dead of night, to the darkest caves and into the deepest oceans, you may be surprised by the undiscovered life in the dark. From fish to foxes, bats to boas, visitors will get up close to a huge variety of creatures specially selected from the Museum’s world-leading Collection, each with their own story to tell.
  • Where: Natural History Museum, South Kensington, London
  • Organised by: Natural History Museum
  • Is this event free? No. Although the museum is free, temporary exhibitions (like Life in the Dark) and some events do cost money. An overview of ticket prices for this exhibition: adults £11.50, children (16 and under) free, concessions £7.50
  • Is this event suitable for children? Yes (interactive exhibition)
  • Is this event accessible? Yes
  • Website: Life in the Dark exhibition

Wildlife Photographer of the Year Exhibition, Natural History Museum

Animal Portraits - Highly Commended. © Isak Pretorius / Wildlife Photographer of the Year
Animal Portraits – Highly Commended. © Isak Pretorius / Wildlife Photographer of the Year
  • When: Friday 19 October 2018 – summer 2019
  • What: Now in its 54th year, the Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibition combines the extraordinary work of talented professionals and gifted amateur photographers from around the globe. The exhibition showcases the beauty, magnificence and diversity of life on our planet, whilst highlighting its fragility and our crucial role in protecting it. Come and be enamoured by the wonderment of nature in the world we live in.
  • Where: Natural History Museum, South Kensington, London
  • Organised by: Natural History Museum
  • Is this event suitable for children? Yes
  • Is this event accessible? Yes
  • Is this event free? No. Although the museum is free, temporary exhibitions and some events do cost money. An overview of ticket prices for this exhibition: adults £15, children £9, concessions £12
  • Website: Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibition

Marine plastic pollution: the science story

  • When: Tuesday 15 January, 6 – 7.45pm
  • What: Marine plastic pollution is one of the hottest environmental topics of our time. The amount of plastic entering the ocean each year is estimated to be between 5 and 14 million tonnes globally, and rising. This event will explore the issue at both the local and global scale; highlighting research by ZSL’s #OneLess campaign and its Thames River plastic bottle monitoring programme, and reviewing what data have been generated to paint the global picture. Speakers will discuss the impacts on wildlife, people and coastal cities, and the links between plastic pollution and poverty.
  • Where: ZSL London Zoo, Regent’s Park, London
  • Organised by: ZSL London Zoo
  • Is this event suitable for children? No
  • Is this event accessible? Possibly – contact organiser for details
  • Is this event free? Yes
  • Website: Marine plastic pollution: the science story

What events are on in Norfolk this month?

From Harriers to the Heavens

Marsh harrier. © Les Bunyan/RSPB Images
Marsh harrier. © Les Bunyan/RSPB Images
  • When: Tuesday 22 January and Tuesday 12 February, 3.30pm
  • What: Join the RSPB as we enjoy the spectacle of  wintering marsh harriers returning to roost on the reserve. Then as darkness falls, take advantage of Titchwell’s dark skies and turn your gaze to the heavens under the expert guidance of the Kings Lynn and District Astronomical Society.
  • Where: RSPB Titchwell Marsh, Norfolk
  • Organised by: RSPB and Kings Lynn and District Astronomical Society
  • Is this event free? No. Adults £7.50, RSPB members £6. Discount applies to children. Advance booking is essential
  • Is this event suitable for children? Yes
  • Is this event accessible? Possibly – contact organiser for details
  • Website: From Harriers to the Heavens

What events are on in Oxfordshire this month?

Brown hairstreak butterfly egg hunt

Brown hairstreak butterfly. © Iain H Leach
Brown hairstreak butterfly. © Iain H Leach
  • When: Saturday 19 January
  • What: Brown hairstreak butterfly egg hunt.
  • Where: Raleigh Park, North Hinksey, Oxford
  • Organised by: Upper Thames Butterfly Conservation Group
  • Is this event free? Yes
  • Is this event suitable for children? Possibly – contact organiser for details
  • Is this event accessible? Possibly – contact organiser for details
  • Website: Brown Hairstreak Butterfly Hunt

What events are on in Somerset this month?

Champion tree walk 

Tyntesfield Estate Guide leading a tree walk_Tyntesfield garden. © Alana Wright
Tyntesfield Estate Guide leading a tree walk_Tyntesfield garden. © Alana Wright
  • When: Sunday 20 January, 5 May, 14 July, 13 October, 9.30am – 12.30pm
  • What: The Victorian Gothic estate of Tyntesfield, near Bristol, is home to over 40 county champion trees – the tallest, widest, oldest of their species. On this guided walk you’ll discover hidden gems and ancient giants. Be sure to wear your walking shoes!
  • Where: National Trust Tyntesfield, Wraxall, Somerset
  • Organised by: National Trust
  • Is this event free? No. £10 per person, includes refreshments. Advance booking is essential.
  • Is this event suitable for children? Accompanied children are welcome
  • Is this event accessible? The walk crosses the Tyntesfield estate on variable terrain with some steep inclines and descents.
  • Website: Champion tree walk

What events are on in Suffolk this month?

Clatterings, ghosts and egrets

Little egret. © Paul Chesterfield/RSPB Images
Little egret. © Paul Chesterfield/RSPB Images
  • When: Sunday 20 January, 2 – 5pm
  • What: Winter afternoons are a fantastic time to witness spectacles on the reserve. Up to 20,000 crows, rooks and jackdaws roost in the poplar woods and increasing numbers of egrets, including a couple of great white egrets roost at the far end of the reserve. Join the RSPB for a circular walk of around three miles to witness these spectacles first hand.
  • Where: RSPB Lakenheath, Suffolk
  • Organised by: RSPB
  • Is this event free? No. Adults £8, children £4 (RSPB members: adults £6, children £3)
  • Is this event suitable for children? Yes, aged 8 and above
  • Is this event accessible? Possibly – contact organiser for details
  • Website: Clatterings, ghosts and egrets

EVENTS IN SCOTLAND

What events are on in Glasgow this month?

Dippy on Tour: A Natural History Adventure 

Dippy being reassembled in Glasgow. © SNS
Dippy being reassembled in Glasgow. © SNS
  • When: Tuesday 22 January – Sunday 5 May, 10am – 5pm
  • What: In the fourth stop on its eight-venue-tour over almost three years, the Natural History Museum London’s famous diplodocus cast (known as Dippy) is on show in Glasgow. At Kelvingrove, Dippy’s 292 bone structure will be accompanied by a very special exhibition telling the story of Andrew Carnegie, the Scottish philanthropist who, in Wyoming in 1912, uncovered the fossil from which Dippy is cast. The exhibition will display a variety objects related to the Diplodocus’s fascinating history, giving visitors the chance to learn more about Andrew Carnegie and his namesake Diplodocus carnegii.
  • Where: Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum, Glasgow
  • Organised by: Natural History Museum London and Glasgow Life
  • Is this event free? Yes.
  • Is this event suitable for children? Yes.
  • Is this event accessible? Yes – contact organiser for details
  • Website: Dippy on Tour: A Natural History Adventure

What events are on in Perth and Kinross this month?

Bird ringing demonstration

Bird ringing. © Rahul Thanki/RSPB Images
Bird ringing. © Rahul Thanki/RSPB Images
  • When: Saturday 26 January, 10am – 12pm
  • What: Join us the RSPB during the Big Garden Birdwatch and see wild birds up close as the Tayside Ringing Group demonstrate the art of bird ringing – a technique that gives us an insight into the lives of our favourite garden bird species.
  • Where: RSPB Loch Leven, Perth & Kinross
  • Organised by: RSPB Scotland
  • Is this event free? Yes. No need to book, just drop in.
  • Is this event suitable for children? Possibly – contact organiser for details
  • Is this event accessible? Possibly – contact organiser for details
  • Website: Bird ringing demonstration

EVENTS IN WALES

What events are on in Ceredigion this month?

Winter tree identification

  • When: Friday 25 January
  • What: This workshop will enable participants to identify winter twigs (from deciduous trees) using a ‘key’. Starting with an indoor session about twig terminology before heading outside. Trees and shrubs growing at Denmark farm will be tackled. There will also be a range of prepared specimens to study in the classroom.
  • Where: Denmark Farm Conservation Centre, near Lampeter, Ceredigion
  • Organised by: Denmark Farm Conservation Centre
  • Is this event free? No. £25 per person (£20 for students/low waged). Advance booking required.
  • Website: Winter tree identification workshop

Volunteer taster day (Get Active for Wildlife)

  • When: Sunday 27 January
  • What: Come along and find out about volunteering opportunities for local people to get involved. This will include practical habitat management skills, training days and monitoring the wildlife. All of this will help benefit the wildlife on this nature reserve for the future.
  • Where: Denmark Farm Conservation Centre, near Lampeter, Ceredigion
  • Organised by: Denmark Farm Conservation Centre
  • Is this event free? Yes, but advance booking is required
  • Website: Volunteer taster day

What events are on in Conwy this month?

The Record Breaking Bird Show! 

Blue tit perched on branch. © Louise Greenhorn/RSPB Images
Blue tit perched on branch. © Louise Greenhorn/RSPB Images
  • When: Saturday 26 and Sunday 27 January, 2pm
  • What: As part of our Big Garden Birdwatch Weekend, enjoy this family friendly interactive show and discover the fascinating world of birds.
  • Where: RSPB Conwy, Llandudno Junction, Conwy
  • Organised by: RSPB
  • Is this event free? No. Wildlife Explorers £1, non-members £2
  • Is this event suitable for children? Yes, suitable for children aged 3 to 10 years.
  • Is this event accessible? Possibly – contact organiser for details
  • Website: The Record Breaking Bird Show

What events are on in Gwent this month?

Bird of Prey Day

Barn owl. © Dave Braddock/RSPB Images
Barn owl. © Dave Braddock/RSPB Images
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  • When: Sunday 27 January and Sunday 24 February, 2 hour sessions throughout the day.
  • What: Festival Park Owl Sanctuary will be bringing a group of feathered friends to Newport Wetlands, with a variety of owls, hawks and falcons that have been rescued and are unable to return to the wild. See this amazing birds up close and find out how you can help protect them. This will be followed by some bird of prey arts and crafts activities with RSPB staff.
  • Where: RSPB Newport Wetlands, Gwent
  • Organised by: RSPB
  • Is this event free? No. RSPB members £4.40, non-members £5.50 (one adult free with every child). Advance booking is essential
  • Is this event suitable for children? Yes
  • Is this event accessible? Possibly – contact organiser for details
  • Website: Bird of Prey Day

How to submit an event for this page

If you have a wildlife or nature-themed event that could be included on this page, please e-mail Megan Shersby with the following:

  • Name of event
  • Website link for the event
  • Date and time
  • Location (including county)
  • Information about the event (no more than 50 words)
  • Pricing and booking details
  • Publicity image (with credit)
  • Whether the event is accessible and/or suitable for children

Ideally, events should be received at least two weeks before the calendar month begins.