Lockdown prompted more people to explore nature and wildlife in Nottinghamshire

People spent more time outdoors, explored new green spaces and noticed more wildlife than ever before in Nottinghamshire during lockdown, a survey has revealed.

By Lucy Roberts
Wednesday, 28th October 2020, 3:38 pm
People spotted more different types of wildlife than ever before during the national lockdown.
People spotted more different types of wildlife than ever before during the national lockdown.

The research was undertaken by Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust to understand people’s connection with nature as well as the their fears and aspirations for the natural environment.

Key findings included 92 per cent of people noticing the reduction in traffic at the height of lockdown and 56 per cent experiencing cleaner air.

A total of 62 per cent had spent more time outdoors during lockdown, with 50 per cent discovering a new green space.

More people spent time outdoors during the lockdown.

The most popular places to experience the outdoors were private gardens, with 92 per cent of participants having spent more time in theirs, followed by the wider countryside, parks and nature reserves.

An overwhelming majority believed that time spent outdoors had been a comfort during the challenging lockdown period and almost a third (33 per cent) stated that their mental health had improved as a result of time spent outdoors.

More than 40 per cent of people, especially younger respondents, stated that they had seen more or different wildlife over the period.

Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust chief executive Paul Wilkinson said: “While we may now be heading into a period of further restrictions due to Covid-19, we felt it was important to capture peoples’ experience of and reflections on what was a pretty unique experience during the nationwide lockdown.

"It is clear that many more people than ever before have appreciated a connection with nature but we should also recognise that access to nature isn’t as easy for everyone – particularly people without private gardens, those living in densely populated urban areas and people with disabilities or health issues.”