Dazzling: the small tortoiseshell butterfly

Butterfly numbers fall after last year's cold summer

Butterfly numbers fell by more than a fifth across the UK last year, a study has revealed.

Dazzling: the small tortoiseshell butterfly

Butterfly numbers 'fall by a fifth'

Butterfly numbers fell by more than a fifth across the UK countryside last year, a study has revealed.

Rare bumblebee reintroduced to UK

A bumblebee which vanished from the English countryside almost a quarter of a century ago has been reintroduced.

Study gives new hope for native black honeybee

Native black honeybees are doing better across the UK than previously thought, according to a study which raises hopes they could help boost the insect's fortunes.

Michael McCarthy: Real Spring starts this Sunday

I wrote recetly that four is not really a sufficient number for seasons, with mid-March, for example, being neither spring proper nor late winter, but something in between. And the spring's true heart also does not fit with the traditional versions. As far as I am concerned, spring in southern England, where I live, begins this Sunday, 15 April.

Insect bite cures show little evidence of working

There is little evidence that over-the-counter cures for insect bites work, according to new research today.

David Randall: Let's strim these mowing jobsworths

Our writer bemoans the obsessive razing of our wild flora

Letters: Bees and pesticides

End the denial over bee poisoning

Defra has now admitted the health of bees is a 'serious issue'

Government to reconsider nerve agent pesticides

The Government is to reconsider its refusal to ban neonicotinoid pesticides, the nerve-agent chemicals blamed for the collapse of bee colonies worldwide, the chief scientist at the Department of the Environment, Sir Robert Watson, told The Independent.

The decline of the honey bee threatens farming because it pollinates crops

Insecticides blamed for bee decline

Worldwide declines in bee colonies, threatening much of global agriculture, may be caused by a new generation of nerve-agent pesticides, two new studies strongly suggest.

The decline of the honey bee threatens farming because it pollinates crops

New pesticides linked to bee population collapse

Two studies confirm dangers of 'nerve agents' used on one-third of all British cropland

Leading article: Crisis in the bee population is too serious to ignore

Twice in the past three years, the Government has been asked, on the basis of compelling evidence, to suspend the use of the new generation of neonicotinoid pesticides, until the increasingly worrying evidence that they are extremely harmful to bees and other pollinating insects has been shown to be unfounded.

Drought places wildlife, from trees to tadpoles, under serious threat

Much of Britain's wildlife, from dragonflies to water voles, face a difficult summer because of the drought, the Environment Agency has warned.

Drought will cause a 'wildlife tragedy', says Environment Agency

Exceptional dry spell threatens species from trees to tadpoles

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A speech by an ex-MI6 boss hints at a plan going back over a decade. In some areas, being Shia is akin to being a Jew in Nazi Germany, says Patrick Cockburn
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First Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through the trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
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Refugee children let down by Washington's high ideals

Democrats and Republicans refuse to set aside their differences to cope with the influx of desperate Central Americas, says Rupert Cornwell
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Children's books are too white, says Laureate

Malorie Blackman appeals for a better ethnic mix of authors and characters and the illustrator Quentin Blake comes to the rescue
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Matthew Barzun: America's diplomatic dude

The US Ambassador to London holds 'jeans and beer' gigs at his official residence – it's all part of the job, he tells Chris Green
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Meet the 'Quantified Selfers'

From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor
Madani Younis: Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

Madani Younis wants the neighbourhood to follow his work as closely as his audiences do
Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

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Gavin Maxwell's bitter legacy: Was the otter man the wildlife champion he appeared to be?

Otter man Gavin Maxwell's bitter legacy

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Joanna Rowsell: The World Champion cyclist on breaking her collarbone, shattering her teeth - and dealing with alopecia

Joanna Rowsell: 'I wear my wig to look normal'

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Bill Granger's quick and delicious marinades

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Anyone but Argentina – why Brazilians don’t love their neighbours any more

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