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Hey Australia, we’re all going through a pretty stressful and uncertain time, with lockdowns unlikely to go away soon. It’s important we all stay connected to each other and to the nature around us, to keep us grounded, healthy and as happy as possible.
Throughout 2020 lockdowns, we provided a weekly #NatureAtHome activity round-up, to keep everyone entertained and connected with nature. While we don’t currently have the capacity to offer this weekly, we’ve collated some of our favourite nature live-streams, soundscapes and activities here in our ‘best of’ Nature At Home! We’ll add new activities whenever we come across them!
So dive in and find something to listen to, watch or try out while staying safe at home! Let us know if there are other ways we can help you stay connected with nature!
If you have missed our weekly #NatureAtHome activity round-ups, please let us know via email or via social media. We would love to hear from you! If you are in a position to help us keep bringing #NatureAtHome experiences and resources to Australians, we’d really appreciate any support, big or small, via our donation page. Thank you! Keep well!
Find a bit of ground. Preferably somewhere like a yard, a park or maybe a beach. Get comfortable (on a towel or rug if you like!) and study the life you can see immediately in front of you.
Look for invertebrates crawling through a forest of grass, or trying to making their way up a mountain of sand.
See how the tiniest of plants can still have such intricate detail.
Can you hear rustlings?
If you put your ear to the sand can you hear crabs or worms tunnelling beneath?
If getting down on the ground is difficult for you, you might want to settle yourself in front of a bush or tumble of rocks. The important thing is to draw your focus to just a small area.
Chill out and tune in to the life in this tiny patch of your world. You’ll be surprised at the tiny lives being lived out all around you.
This exercise can be even better when shared with a friend or a little one. What life can you find together? What does each of you notice most?
PS: If you have a dog, we suggest doing this exercise somewhere where your best mate won’t distract you by standing over you and licking your everything.
*NEW* Watch the fastest birds in the world raise their young high above the streets of Melbourne. The “Collins Street Falcons” are a pair of Peregrine Falcons, and falcon-watching has become an annual event in the state. You can even join the official 367 Collins Falcon Watchers group on Facebook!
Watch a pair of White-bellied Sea-eagles in Sydney as they begin to tend their nest ahead of this year’s breeding season!
Witness the unique Giant Cuttlefish aggregation off Whyalla in South Australia, where hundreds of thousands of these giant cephalopods are currently congregating to mate!
Check in on a Little Penguin burrow at Phillip Island.
Adorably-fluffy Royal Albatross chicks in New Zealand.
One of our favourite nature cams – The Nature Conservancy’s Reef Cam in Port Phillip Bay – is currently down, but you can still watch highlights and read about the rocky reef and Australasian Gannet colony on film.
Discover a whole world of nature livestreams at explore.org
Listening Earth: Tune into nature with these immersive natural soundscapes recorded by Andrew and Sarah of Listening Earth, a phenomenal sound recording team with more than twenty years of recordings in Australia and overseas.
With single, unedited recordings as long as three hours, you can experience daybreak on a restored Kimberley wetland, birdsong in a fern gully, surf, beach and shoreline sounds and an evening in the Australian bush, all for free.
Look at Me podcast: Kangaroos and koalas are awesome – there’s no denying that – but there are so many other amazing Australian animals worthy of our attention. That’s why we teamed up with The Guardian Australia to produce this six-part series all about the underappreciated creatures that make our continent unique.
Finally getting their time in the spotlight on Look at Me are: the Giant Australian Cuttlefish, the Plains-wanderer, the Blue-banded Bee, the Marsupial Mole, the Giant Gippsland Earthworm, and the Mountain Pygmy Possum. Never heard of these creatures? Well, that’s sort of the idea.
We’ve just wrapped up interviews for series two, so look out for more Look at Me later this year!
*NEW EPS* Nature Track: Tune in and chill out with these peaceful soundscapes from around Australia, exquisitely recorded by the legendary Ann Jones for ABC Science. Ranging from one to three hours, these wild moments are the perfect accompaniment to work, play or sleep and Jones has annotated some so that listeners can learn the species they are hearing!
Brain On Nature podcast: The “Brain on Nature” podcast is Sarah Allely’s account of how natural surroundings helped her recover and changed her brain after a bike accident left her “unable to read, write, watch TV or listen to podcasts”. Each episode is beautifully put-together, incredibly sound-rich and features the academic insight of experts.
Noisy by Nature (great for littlies): Noisy by Nature is a fantastic ABC kids podcast exploring the sounds of Australia!
*NEW* Back to Nature on ABC + iview: Screening Tuesdays at 8 PM, Back to Nature is the immersive, heart-led nature series we are all craving. Explained as ‘gentle TV‘, Back to Nature is a visually stunning documentary series featuring Aaron Pedersen and Holly Ringland guiding viewers through the wonder and awe of the Australian landscape, exploring stories that reconnect the audience with the natural world, with Country.
Each episode, viewers are invited to go outside and connect with nature, or Country, through a themed prompt or #BacktoNatureAU challenge.
We’re proud to be leading the impact evaluation of this timely and important series by Threshhold Pictures and Media Stockade.
Eucalypt: Whether in the ponderous form of a River Red Gum or the towering majesty of a Mountain Ash, eucalypts define the character of the Australian bush. No other tree is so synonymous with the nature of our continent. Remember The Wild is proud to present Eucalypt – a five-part documentary series about these essential trees.
The Eucalypt series explores these trees’ evolution and ecology, their intimate connection with Indigenous Australians, their role in art and craftsmanship, and their future in a changing world.
These films tell the story of the tree and the continent that shaped one another. Watch Eucalypt, and rediscover an Australian icon.
How to Camera: Watch our two-part series on how to get the most from your camera and get amazing wildlife photographs without disturbing your subjects!
Look at Me Live: During Melbourne’s first lockdown, we teamed up with the Australian Conservation Foundation and writer, comedian and all-round legend Benjamin Law again to explore the world of nature, this time without even leaving the property! This time we brought on board a team of amazing guests to help us explore: Osher Gunsberg, ‘The Kates’ Kate McLennan and Kate McCartney, Nakkiah Lui, Bjorn Stewart and Scott Ludlam! Watch eps one and two here and three here.
Australia’s Ocean Odyssey: Jump aboard the East Australian Current – the EAC of Finding Nemo fame! – and discover how the rich wonders along Australia’s coast.
Sir David Attenborough on ABC iview: Surely these need no further intro, so just head to ABC iView and check out the 20-odd series and specials on offer!
Build a bee hotel: Ever wanted to build a bee hotel to give some of our amazing native bees a home but didn’t know where to start? This bunch of resources will help you get to know our native pollinators and make sure you provide the best home possible for them.
Watch: Gardening Australia Native Bee Buzz
Watch: Gardening Australia Bee Hotel
Read: Aussie Bee comprehensive bee hotel guide
Read: Remember The Wild’s Build a Bee Sanctuary in 4 easy steps
Try pitfall trapping: It’s time for some backyard science! Get to know the invertebrates in your backyard with this simple pitfall trap, a method used by actual scientists! Remember to be careful with your finds to avoid hurting them or getting bitten or stung yourself!
Which animals live in your backyard?: Discover who has been visiting your place with this clever and very simple experiment, shared by the University of Sydney.
All you need is a bit of plasticine (playdough should do) and wire!
Nature Journaling and Colouring-in: Meet one of our favourite naturalists, artists and storytellers – Paula Peeters the Paperbark Writer!
Colour in her beautiful scenes of Australian nature, read her nature journal and learn how to record your own observations with her free video lessons and free downloadable book!!
Become an Urban Field Naturalist: The Urban Field Naturalist project is an invitation to discover the stories being lived out around you, and use your experiences to connect others with nature. Whether you prefer to read or share stories of nature (or both), this welcoming community is the place for you!
Spotlight for Spiders: Rug up, grab a torch and head out after dark to get to know your friendly neighbourhood spiders!
If you’ve ever swung a torch around at night, you’ll know that the world is filled with the tiny glittering eyes! These pin-pricks of light are sometimes, rather romantically, mistaken for luminescent fireflies, but the curious spotlighter will usually find a tiny spider or moth at the other end of the torch’s beam!
Spotlighting for spiders is a great way to explore the night and sightings are almost always guaranteed (unlike when you go hunting for furrier beasties).
To spotlight for spiders (or any animal) hold a torch next to your head at eye-level and look along the beam. When your torch-beam catches a glint of reflection, head over to see what you can find! Remember to leave it where it is and never touch an animal you can’t identify!
Record biodiversity: Spot and record the life around you during lockdown and contribute to the scientific understanding of Australia’s biodiversity! Using the iNaturalist or Questagame (great for kids) apps, you can record photos of what you see, add them to the world map and have them identified by experts!
Seal Spotter: Help scientists count the Australian Fur Seals of Phillip Island, without leaving your desk (or couch, or bed, wherever!).
FrogID: Got frogs in your bog? Download the Frog ID app and record frogs calling near you to help track species distributions acros Australia. You can also use the app to discover which species might live you and hear their call!
Virtual Garden: Explore the Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria through their Virtual Garden.
Budj Bim Virtual Tour: Discover the World Heritage Listed Budj Bim Cultural Landscape on the lands of the Gunditjmara people of south-western Victoria.
Deep: Scroll down to the deepest known depths of the ocean and discover some of the species that can be found there in this fun and seemingly endless infographic.
Window Swap: Open a window into someone else’s world, anywhere on Earth!
Mt Resilience: Are you prepared for the future of Australian weather?
Mt Resilience is an augmented reality (AR) game that accompanies the series and shows how communities can be resilient and even thrive in the face of extreme weather. By exploring Mt Resilience, players unlock scenarios, trigger catastrophes, watch response and recovery efforts and learn how to build resilience to big weather at home.
Murray River Cruise: Grab your headphones and let yourself drift on this peaceful cruise and kayak through a spectacular section of the South Australian Riverlands. Listen to Whistling Kites ahead, float with Australian Pelicans and admire the incredible red and gold limestone cliffs of the Murray River.
Busselton Jetty virtual experiences: Dive beneath the 1.8 km Busselton Jetty and experience the wonders of the west coast, without getting wet!
Explore Uluru: Explore some of the key sites of Uluru with stories and songs by the local Aṉangu people in this immersive tour from Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park.
Tell us how you’re connecting with nature during this strange time by using the #RememberTheWild tag on Twitter or Instagram or send us a message on Facebook.
Take care of yourselves and each other and remember that there is always solace to be sought in the natural world.