More UK biodiversity resources.
Biodiversity and Conservation Information
This section provides details of some UK organisations which are active in biodiversity conservation or related fields.
We try to ensure that these links are correct and updated regularly. Please contact with suggestions for additions or amendments.
Important Notice: the links listed below are provided for information only, and are not intended to be referrals or endorsements of any organisation or group. Furthermore we cannot assume any responsibility or liability for any communications or materials available at linked sites, which are beyond our control.
While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of this information, the objectives and activities of organisations may change without notice. We advise you to consult with relevant organisations to confirm current details, and remind you that we cannot be held liable for any errors or omissions (see Site Terms and Conditions).
The Biological Records Centre is the national custodian of data on the distribution of wildlife in the British Isles and focus for recording and cataloging UK species. The BRC coordinates a wide range of recording schemes covering most groups of organisms, maintains an extensive database of UK records and provides information on most biological recording activities.
The Joint Nature Conservation Committee is the Government's wildlife adviser, undertaking national and international conservation work on behalf of the three country conservation agencies: English Nature, Scottish Natural Heritage and the Countryside Council for Wales. The JNCC website provides a wide range of information on UK and international nature conservation issues.
MarLIN is an initiative of the Marine Biological Association of the UK and major holders and users of marine biological data to provide information about marine habitats, communities and species around Britain and Ireland. The MarLIN database provides the marine node to the UK National Biodiversity Network, and is searchable by Species, Geographic Region, Keywords, Organisation and data source.
The National Biodiversity Network is a partnership initiative to build the UK's first network of biodiversity information, aimed at increasing the accessibility and value of biodiversity information by facilitating collection and exchange of data through common formats.
The NBN Gateway website https://data.nbn.org.uk/ brings together biodiversity information from a wide range of sources, providing an unparalleled window onto UK's wildlife at local and national scales.
The National Federation for Biological Recording brings together suppliers, managers, and users of wildlife information (species, habitat and site data), providing a forum for sharing knowledge and experience. The organisation promotes the importance of biological information in nature conservation, planning and research. Membership is open to individual naturalists, local and national organisations.
The Natural History Museum is the UK's national museum of nature and a centre of scientific excellence in taxonomy and biodiversity. The Museum conducts various projects aimed at promoting better understanding of the natural world, many of which are accessible via its website. Two sites of particular interest are:
NHM / NBN Species Dictionary
which explore names and classification of UK species.
[11-12-2013: The Nature Navigator is currently unavailable].
Naturenet is a voluntary enterprise providing practical information for those interested in the countryside, its management, and nature conservation in the UK. It maintains an extensive library of articles and resources, aswell as reference information about other organisations involved in this field.
The Scottish Natural Heritage is dedicated to safeguarding and enhancing Scotland's natural heritage, particularly its natural, genetic and scenic diversity. It promotes public awareness and understanding of the natural heritage, supports efforts leading to improvement and encourages environmental sustainability in all forms of economic activity.
The Society for Conservation Biology is an international professional organisation promoting the scientific study of factors affecting biological diversity. The Society was formed to develop the scientific and technical means for protecting life on Earth: species, ecosystems, and the processes that sustain them.
The Wildlife Trusts partnership is the UK's leading conservation charity exclusively dedicated to wildlife. The network comprises 47 local Wildlife Trusts, Wildlife Watch (the junior branch) and 52 urban wildlife groups, caring for over 2,560 nature reserves across the country.
The Botanical Society of the British Isles conducts scientific research into plants in Britain, and is the major source of information on the status and distribution of flowering plants and ferns in Britain. This data, considered vital to botanical conservation, is gathered by county recorders and published in plant atlases and rare and scarce species publications,
Activities include: plant and habitat surveying, publishing reference handbooks, conferences and field meetings throughout the British Isles.
The British Bryological Society promotes a wider interest in all aspects of Bryology by supporting various projects (including recording UK distributions), facilitating research, providing information for conservation and organising meetings and tuition. It also offers specialist advice on matters of public concern affecting mosses and liverworts.
Activities include: conservation and regional recording projects, field meetings, workshops and symposia throughout the UK, reading circle (publication loans), publishing checklists and occasional special volumes.
The British Lichen Society aims to stimulate and advance interest in all branches of lichenology. It publishes several journals and as a variety of information and fact-sheets for lichenologists, offers assistance in identifying specimens and maintains a herbarium and library of items for loan.
Activities include; local and national field meetings, publishing checklists for Lichens and Lichenicolous Fungi, mapping lichen distribution in the British Isles and generally promoting the conservation of lichens
British Marine Life Study Society is a voluntary organisation promoting the study of marine fauna and flora surrounding the British Isles. The Society publishes a journal, bulletin and other highly readable information about marine life and the marine environment, encourages collaboration with marine organisations and promotes conservation ideas and projects by liaising with fishery organisations and other wildlife groups.
The British Mycological Society promotes all aspects of mycology. It publishes some of the major academic journals, maintains an extensive database of fungal records, and works together with a network of local recording groups throughout the country.
Activities include: scientific meetings, workshops and forays for field mycologists, publishing journals and generally promoting Conservation and Field Mycology.
The British Pteridological Society provides a focus for fern enthusiasts, providing a source of specialist information about ferns and their allies through publications, formal and informal meetings.
Activities include: supporting regional and special interest groups, plant and spore exchange schemes, field meetings and garden visits, reading circle and formal and informal discussions.
British Trust for Ornithology is an independent scientific research trust investigating the populations, movements and ecology of wild birds in the British Isles. The Trust specialises in the design, implementation and analysis of volunteer wild bird surveys. Results are used by campaigners and decision-makers to set priorities and target resources, directly aiding conservation.
Activities include: national, annual and specialist wild bird surveys, analysis and dissemination of survey results, occasional publications.
FreshwaterLife is a collaborative project bringing together information on freshwater and the organisms that live in freshwater habitats. The site allows easy access to wide-ranging resources including identification guides and keys, standardised methods and an ecological database, facilitating information transfer and promoting the importance freshwaters.
The Mammal Society is dedicated to the study and conservation of British mammals, working to protect British mammals and halt the decline of threatened species. The Society carries out a range of studies identifying problems and promoting policies based on sound scientific principles.
Activities include: species and habitat monitoring and surveying, field-trips and training workshops, developing conservation plans, promoting mammal studies, providing information through publications and education resources and advising on relevant issues.
Plantlife is dedicated exclusively to conserving all forms of plant life in their natural habitat. Plantlife works directly to stop common wild plants becoming rare in the wild, conserve threatened species and protect sites of exceptional botanical importance through practical conservation work, influencing government and environmental policy-makers and promoting wild plant conservation.
Activities include: volunteer plant surveys, reserve management and practical conservation work, campaigning and collaborating with UK and international organisations.
The RSPB champions the conservation of birds and other wildlife in the UK and worldwide through a number of means, including advising policy and decision makers on conservation and environment issues, researching birds and the environment, protecting, restoring and managing habitats, carrying out recovery projects for threatened species, promoting biodiversity conservation and providing information about birds and wildlife.
Activities include: managing over 170 reserves, protecting vulnerable sites, coordinating surveys, fund raising, publishing journals and other information.
The Wildflower Society was created specifically for amateur botanists/wild flower lovers in the UK, and aims to promote a greater knowledge of field botany and conservation of the British flora and countryside. The Society and publishes a Wild Flower journal and maintains the Wild Flower record book, listing 1,000 of the most recogniseable plants in the British Isles, for recording location, date and habitat.
Activities include: national and local field meetings, identifying and recording wild flowers, wild flower conservation and competitions, Wild Flower Magazine.
The Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust is dedicated to conserving wetlands and their biodiversity, and is the largest international wetland conservation charity in the UK.
The WWT manages around 2000 hectares of wetland bird reserves (including 7 Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI), 5 Special Protection Areas (SPA) and 6 Ramsar sites) and provides the knowledge and information needed for conservation action.
Activities include: restoring habitats, national and international research projects, captive breeding programmes, direct action for threatened wetland birds, quarterly magazine.
Wild About Britain is an extensive online resource focusing on wildlife, environment and conservation. It includes a popular newspaper and active forum.
The site, which is free to join, provides information and discussion on topical wildlife issues, help and advice (including identification) via the forum, product and book reviews and extensive galleries.