WHARFEDALE Naturalists have launched their Winter Programme which as usual features a range of outdoor natural history activities and indoor meetings at Christchurch, Ilkley.

Outdoor activities include bird outings, a coach trip, a fungus foray and a winter walk.

The Christchurch lectures cover local topics such as Lower Wharfedale wildlife, Yorkshire Coast Nature and Wildlife Gardening, but also venture further afield with talks about, for example, the Burren, Colombia and the South Pacific.

The vast majority of these events are free to members.

Wharfedale Naturalists is one of the largest wholly voluntary natural history societies in the UK and the more members it can attract the more it will be able to further the Society’s objectives of promoting natural history to a wide audience and supporting the conservation, protection and improvement of the environment especially in Wharfedale.

The main event of this Winter Season will be the visit of TV Presenter, renowned Entomologist and Explorer, Dr George McGavin who will give an inspiring talk entitled ‘What Have Insects Ever Done For Us’ on October 8th at Christchurch commencing at 7.15pm.

His BBC TV programmes include ‘Monkey Planet’, the ‘Lost Land…’ series, ‘Oak Tree – Nature’s Greatest Survivor’ and most recently ‘A Year to Save my Life: George McGavin and Melanoma’.

His lecture is certain to be both hugely entertaining and relevant and will be especially timely given the concern now being expressed, from data gathered all over the world, about the drastic decline of insects and the severe implication this is likely to have for humanity.

Tickets have initially been restricted to WNS members but can now be reserved by non-members for a fee of £12 – alternatively take out a year’s membership for £12.50 and pay just £5 for a ticket.

For further information about joining Wharfedale Naturalists and/or to reserve a seat (payment on the night) for the George McGavin evening, contact Karen Shackleton, preferably by email karenshackleton@hotmail.com or ring 07790 707419 after 6.30 pm.