Challenging Habitat Blog

G7 Think about all the PLASTIC (please)!

Some people combine serious thought with fun and art…Phil Hambling is one of them:

"Rainbow and the rain" by Ryan Ojibway is licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0

US Study reveals ‘new’ source of microplastics

It’s a great headline: “Plastic Is Falling From The Sky- But Where’s It Coming From?” The answer is not so great, because most of us are contributing: rubber rubbed off our car tyres. Read the story here: Featured… Read More

Citizen Science aboard the Tall Ship Pelican of London

As we are preparing for the 2021 Darwin200 voyage with a whole new set of Citizen Science Projects for young people to engage with, the videos of our science projects piloted during the voyage in summer 2020 are… Read More

Expedition supports Antarctic Science

The next Austral summer (2021/22) will see a rare man-hauled expedition across the Antarctic Peninsula. The expedition team will be ‘dropped off’ at Portal Point, haul equipment up steep slopes and cross the Forbidden Plateau (my question is:… Read More

Darwin200 UK

A few days ago I shared my excitement about my involvement with the organisation Darwin 200 and the UK launch of its Ocean Science and Conservation programme [LINK]. The tall ship Pelican of London has safely arrived at… Read More

Carbon footprint

Having booked my flights from Europe to Ushuaia in Argentina, from where my Antarctic adventure will start next year, it is time to look at my carbon footprint for this journey. A search on the internet provides me… Read More

You take care of what you love, don’t you?

For a change, something really positive here… We are the business of inspiring young people to be curious and ask questions, to get into nature and experience the small and big wonders of it, to make sense of… Read More

(no) Time to Waste!

The latest IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5 ºC spells it out very clearly: we have no time to waste in our efforts to limit the global average temperature increase to… Read More

To the River

In 2008, the Environment Agency wrote “Abandoned mines are one of the most significant pollution threats in Britain” (EA, 2008). This pollution threat to fresh, ground and coastal waters arises from thousands of discharges of mine waters in England, Wales… Read More

Mining and People

‘Poldark‘, the popular BBC series uses the Cornish mining legacy as a backdrop and you might have come across its relics on a coastal walk or moorland walk. Neither the picturesque views of landscape and sea, nor the glamour,… Read More

Metal mine waste tailings dam in Nova Scotia, Canada

‘Toxic’ Places

Following on from writing about mining waste as a challenging habitat for plants (see ‘First Arrivals‘), I want to provide you with the means to make sense of the contamination present in the historic metal mining landscape in Southwest… Read More

First Arrivals

  If epiphytes were people, we would call them clever strategists. I guess this holds true for any organism that manages to occupy a hostile corner, but I am fascinated by life forms that grow on toxic substrates. In this… Read More