The natural connection

My blog posts work best when they are from the heart so here goes…

These last few weeks have been rather difficult for me. There isn’t any one reason that I can blame for me being down but the  natural world has been very helpful for improving my mood, which is the topic of today blog post. I have needed some time to work out what direction to take in life, I haven’t quite worked this out yet but having time alone in the natural world has really helped. The power of nature in affecting  health has been known for a very long time but in my opinion is still undervalued, it has the potential to not only help people and wildlife, it could also save the NHS millions of pounds too. Even just being in my garden has the power to affect me positively but that is a topic of a guest blog post I am writing at the moment so this one focuses on further afield.

I am based in Aylesbury (Buckinghamshire) and while the town itself is horrible and a concrete jungle, I am blessed to be near the Chilterns, Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. The Chilterns are famous for their rolling chalk hills which will be decimated by the proposed HS2 route unfortunately. I have always had a connection with these chalk hills but since coming back from university nearly a year ago now, I have rekindled a special kind of love for them.


I find one of the best kinds of therapy if to chase around insects to photograph and record them. I now have a big backlog of records to submit when it is too rainy to get out. In the mean time, here are a few insects that I have spotted in the last few weeks:

Nomada fucata

Nomada fucata

Grizzled skipper

Grizzled skipper

Lots of garden pollinators

Lots of garden pollinators

24 spot ladybird

24 spot ladybird

All this chasing around insects tires me out sometimes so I have been making sure I take time out to eat some lunch, kick off my shoes and have a read on each of my walks.  This gives me time to get lost in a different world, rest my achey feet and just chill out a bit.


This year I have decided that I need to connect with myself more, and the natural world and even have plans to go wild swimming in a pond full of wildlife. Talking of ponds, recently I have also started some work surveying reptiles and amphibians, this is forcing me out at ungodly hours but is wonderful as it gives me a chance to see the animals that I usually miss because I am sleeping. During my first survey I had a barn own and lots of bats in my torch beam along with foxes and deer. To end on a laugh, here is a picture of me at night falls.


10 responses to “The natural connection

  1. Lovely photos! You are absolutely correct, people need to reconnect with nature, it is good for the soul. I hope you enjoy your wild swimming 🙂

  2. Couldn’t agree more! A few hours snuffling around the Chilterns is the best medicine!

  3. You are so right. It kept me sane (my opinion only!) for over 30 years in a challenging job. Communicating my passion to others is a fairly recent activity – it’s great you are doing it so well already.

  4. Excellent blogpost, Ryan. Couldn’t agree more, reconnecting with the natural world really helps me whenever I’m feeling low. Hope it works its magic for you too. Take care, Louise 🙂

  5. Thank you Louise. 🙂

  6. To have found such a vital connection with nature, Ryan, will help to keep you whole. Cherish it, and yourself, carefully. Lin x

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