Category Archives: Talks

In-person talk 31st March

The final CNHS talk of the term is in person on Thursday evening, 31st March and takes place in the Department of Geography‘s lecture theatre, at 7:00 p.m. Note earlier start time. Please arrive punctually.

The title is Truffles in a warming worldUlf Büntgen from the Department of Geography will discuss how climate change affects one of the most exclusive gourmet foods, and how Cambridge University Botanic Garden can contribute to a better understanding of the ecological requirements that are needed for the formation and maturation of truffle fruit bodies. 

This is a joint meeting with the Department of Geography as part of the Cambridge Festival and will be held in the Department of Geography’s lecture theatre. There will be no admission charge. 

CNHS talks in March

There are four online talks in the March programme. All start at 7:30 p.m. and last about an hour. Members will be emailed the Zoom link and login details nearer the time. To be added the mailing list for events: email webmaster [at] cnhs.org.uk To become a member: see details here.

Thursday 3 March Lower Wood Duncan Mackay, voluntary warden for this Wildlife Trust reserve to the south-east of Cambridge, will talk about the habitats in this fragment of ancient woodland, its fauna and flora and its management.

Lower Wood © Duncan Mackay

Thursday 10 March Measuring and monitoring surface melting
on an Antarctic ice shelf
Rebecca Dell, a glaciologist at the Scott Polar Institute who has recently returned from a trip to Antarctica, will talk about her visit and her experience of working there and her research on ice shelf (in)stability.

Photo © Rebecca Dell

Thursday 17 March How many butterflies are there in the Western Palaearctic? Martin Davies will talk about his lifelong obsession with butterflies. From his first butterfly book to the wonderful handbooks available today, the beauty and diversity of butterfly species has never ceased to amaze him. We may think we know how many butterfly species there are in Europe but how has our understanding of this improved over the years? Lots of wonderful places and species are featured in this wide-ranging detective story, from the Atlantic to theAltai and the Arctic to the Atlas.

Hakkari Emperor Euapatura mirza. Hakkari Valley, Van, SE Turkey. A Western Palaearctic endemic butterfly species. © Martin Davies

Thursday 24 March Fenland flora Owen Mountford has been studying the flora of the Fenland region for over fifty years and will provide an overview of the Fenland Flora project, in which Jonathan Graham and he have been surveying the entire Fenland since about 2005. The project is now reaching completion, and this talk will outline the results, drawing especially on the findings from Cambridgeshire.

Nene Washes looking towards St Marys Church Photo © Jonathan Graham

Peatbogs

Thursday 24th February 2022

Our next talk will be given by Brian Eversham, Chief Executive of the Wildlife Trust for Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire & Northamptonshire

In the talk, which will start punctually at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday 24th February, Brian will start with the battle to save Britain’s largest lowland peatbogs, Thorne and Hatfield Moors. He will cover the range of peatland wildlife, from birds to insects to flowers to fungi, their habitats, and the progress in restoring peatlands across Britain in the last 20 years.

Thorne Moors bog pool (with cottongrass) © Brian Eversham

The talk will be ONLINE via Zoom.

Members will be emailed login details nearer the time.

To be added the mailing list for events: email webmaster [at] cnhs.org.uk To become a member: see details on the website membership page.

Insect photography

Thursday 10th February 2022

Ann Miles, who trained as a biologist, will talk about photographing insects, a lifelong passion. She will demonstrate their beauty, their sometimes bizarre appearances and their fascinating behaviours.

White Dead Nettle beetles (c) Ann Miles

ONLINE via Zoom. Members will be emailed login details nearer the time. To be added the mailing list for events: email webmaster [at] cnhs.org.uk To become a member: see details on the website membership page.

SPRING TALKS START 27th

The Cambridge Natural History Society programme of talks starts on Thursday 27th January, at 7:30 p.m.

Jonathan Shanklin, astronomer, meteorologist, naturalist and past president of Cambridge Natural History Society, will offer a choice of talks. The audience will choose at the start of the meeting. The options are

The Natural History of Comets” (pretty much what it says in the title, but with brief excursions into the ozone hole and climate change)

Marvel at the Moon” (a tour of some of the things seen in the night sky with simple equipment, bringing in some links with natural history, with a brief excursion again) OR

An astronomer in Antarctica” (mostly ozone hole and climate change, with a bit of natural history and atmospheric phenomena). 

The talk will be presented online via Zoom, and CNHS members and those on the mailing list have been sent the Zoom link, which is specific to this meeting.

You will join the meeting in a waiting room and will be let in at 7:30 p.m.  Your video and audio will be off when you join.  You will be able to use chat to ask questions at the end of the talk, or you can raise a virtual hand from “reactions”. 

The event will be recorded and Society members who cannot join the event on Thursday will then be sent a link to allow them to hear it at their leisure.  If you are not a member this is a good reason to join.  Details of how to join the Society are at http://www.cnhs.org.uk/membership/

The Convention on Biodiversity and Conservation in the Caribbean

The last CNHS talk this year will be on Thursday 2nd December when Ellie Devenish-Nelson and Howard Nelson will counter the cold day days of December by talking about the Caribbean.

In the lead-up to the UN Biodiversity Conference, they will consider the implications for conservation in the Caribbean of the Post-2020 Framework for the Convention on Biological Diversity. They will discuss how the opportunities for increasing protection of marine and terrestrial biodiversity presents a big challenge for this important island biodiversity hotspot.

The event will be by Zoom. Members and those on the CNHS mailing list will be sent the link for the meeting. To be added the mailing list, email webmaster [at] cnhs.org.uk . To become a member, which brings further benefits, see our membership page.

25th November NatHistFest

The 2nd Online NatHistFest will be opened on Thursday 25th November 2021 at 7:30 p.m. with talks from some of the exhibitors. These will include:

  • Matt Hayes, University Museum of Zoology, “Butterflies Through Time: engaging audiences with wildlife of the past
  • Chantel Carr, Froglife  “The Importance of educating young people on herpetology
  • Steve Allain, Cambridge & Peterborough Amphibian and Reptile Group “A county atlas for amphibians and reptiles

The event will be by Zoom. Members and those on the CNHS mailing list will be sent the link for the meeting. To be added the mailing list, email webmaster [at] cnhs.org.uk . To become a member, which brings further benefits, see our membership page.

The 2nd online NatHistFest replaces our usual Conversazione, which it was not possible to hold in the spring. It includes exhibits from CNHS members and local organisations on a wide range of topics.

The 17 exhibits from the 2020 online NatHistFest can still be viewed here.

A Trillion Trees 18th November

… a trillion reasons to thrive!

The next talk in the CNHS autumn programme is on 18th November when April Bagwill will introduce us to the Trillion Trees international collaboration. She will explain that it is not about planting trees but that their vision is to see one trillion trees re-grown, saved from loss and better protected around the world by 2050. She will talk about how this worldwide collaborative project aims to do this and to work towards a world where people and nature can thrive.

The talk is ONLINE via Zoom and will start punctually at 7:30 p.m.

Members and those on the mailing list will be emailed login details nearer the time. To be added the mailing list, email webmaster [at] cnhs.org.uk

To become a member, which brings further benefits, see the website: http://www.cnhs.org.uk/membership/

4th November: Hobson’s Brook

The title of the talk on 4th November is Biodiversity of the Hobson’s Brook Corridor

Dr Steve Boreham will talk about the biodiversity of the area surrounding Hobson’s Brook, a chalk stream and historic water course that rises at Nine Wells springs. As a geologist, ecologist and Trustee of Hobson’s Conduit Trust, he will also discuss conservation initiatives and threats to this important green corridor that leads in to the heart of Cambridge City.

The talk is ONLINE via Zoom and will start punctually at 7:30 p.m.

Members and those on the mailing list will be emailed login details nearer the time. To be added the mailing list, email webmaster [at] cnhs.org.uk

To become a member, which brings further benefits, see the website: http://www.cnhs.org.uk/membership/

28th October: A Choice

Jonathan Shanklin, the speaker for our next online talk, on Thursday 28th October, is well-known both to members of CNHS, being a past President and having been involved in the Society for many years. He is also known more widely as one of the team who discovered the ozone hole in 1985.

He is offering the audience a choice of titles:

  • Marvel at the Moon
  • The Flora of Antarctica (and South Georgia & Falklands)
  • The Natural History of Comets
  • An astronomer in Antarctica

Do join us for this talk on Zoom. Even if he does not give the talk you would choose, it will be informative and entertaining. He is an extremely knowledgeable speaker and able to speak authoritatively on all these subjects. He adds that “all will contrive to include mention of climate change and the ozone hole”.

Members and those on the mailing list will be emailed login details before the meeting.
To be added the mailing list for events email webmaster [at] cnhs.org.uk
To become a member, which brings further benefits, see the website: http://www.cnhs.org.uk/membership/