Michael McCarthy

Michael McCarthy, formerly the Independent’s longstanding Environment Editor, now its Environment Columnist, is one of Britain’s leading writers on the environment and the natural world. He has won a string of awards for his work, including Environment Journalist of the Year (three times) and Specialist Writer of the Year in the British Press Awards in 2001. In 2007 he was awarded the Medal of the RSPB for “Outstanding Services to Conservation,” in 2010 he was awarded the Silver Medal of the Zoological Society of London, and in 2011 the Dilys Breeze Medal of the British Trust for Ornithology. In 2009 McCarthy published Say Goodbye To The Cuckoo (John Murray), a study of Britain’s declining migrant birds.

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Poppies blossom during bright sunshine in the Botanical Garden in Munich, Germany

Nature Studies: It takes exposure to the real thing to grasp the full power of the poppy

We invest so much in its symbolism that it's easy to forget the flower itself

A misty morning over Sussex . The view looking towards the South Downs over a champagne vineyard.

Nature Studies: Chalk downs teem with life like no other landscape

Finding any wild orchid is an event. But here there were four species on display

Nature studies: Stay away from the dolphins kept in tanks. The only ones to see live wild

It was all part of a zoological craze that swept the world at the end of the 1960s

Cow Parsley

Cow parsley: the countryside killer

The white flowers may make English country lanes look pretty, but in reality they are killing other wild plants

Nature Studies: You’ve heard the song that features the linnet. But have you heard the linnet sing?

The linnet was prized by cage bird keepers for its melodious, liquid song

Nature Studies: Isn’t it time the BBC broadcast the song of the nightingale again?

After ‘Tweet of the Day’, I’m sure the Corporation would be in sympathy with the idea

Nature Studies: Fingers crossed, we’ll have rare Asian Sandpipers breeding in Gloucestershire

There’s a surge of hormones and they’re like highly-strung teenagers

It's the perfect time of year for a walk down the Thames

Nature Studies: The magic wildlife kingdom that lies just on the edge of London

This year's Easter celebrations take place in a much later Spring than usual, making it the perfect time to enjoy a walk ripe with historical beauty

Nature Studies: Isn’t it time the rarest butterfly in the UK became a bit less rare?

To find it, you need to  target an area within a 30-mile radius of Fort William

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