Connecting for Nature

Keeping Yorkshire folk in touch with their local biodiversity news

Connecting for Nature through Social Media

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YNU field excursion Jul 2013 nr Haybridge, Ganton

Naturalists on a field excursion nr Haybridge, Ganton, July 2013

A big part of our mission to build upon the work of the Local Biodiversity Partnerships (eg Ryedale LBAP, Scarborough LBAP) is to helping to connect relevant people across their local patch and beyond. One of the themes echoed strongly from stakeholder workshops at our inaugural Connecting for Nature Summit was the issue of making contact. Consider these for starters: Connecting local groups with with volunteers, practitioners with site managers, local naturalists with new sites to study, connecting landowners with graziers, passionate lay-people with knowledgeable experts, Jack-of-all-trade conservationists with go-to specialists, Parish Councils with key people who can advise them, local eyes-on-the-ground with decision makers.. etc… I think you catch my drift. So with a increasingly tight constraints upon local authorities and decision makers, stretched resources (financial and human) how can we do this better?


One answer to this is to help people to do this themselves via email, online groups and social media. Building up an online community is a fantastic way to find new people, fresh ideas, practical examples and a supportive network, so that each little group of nature enthusiasts is no longer alone in the dark but can call upon the power of Social Media to conjure up people, resources or advice. If you are still running scared from Social Media and don’t know your tweets from your blogposts then you are certainly not alone and help is at hand. The Connecting for Nature team is formulating a plan for a workshop on Social Media early in the New Year. Please stay tuned for further details…!

How does Connecting for Nature use Social Media?

Connecting for Nature Facebook Group

Connecting for Nature Facebook Group

This online forum is about joining people together with a common interest in biodiversity-related work in our part of Yorkshire. It is a Group rather than a Page meaning that all members can contribute (and are encouraged to do so), not just the users who are ‘Admins’ for the Group. Great to see that the Group now has 110 members with a dozen or so new in the past fortnight. Because this is run in parallel with the more official email list of Partnership members, it is much more informal, immediate and social, allowing anyone to comment and respond to pictures, news, links etc. We are trying to be liberal in our membership thus ‘anyone who cares about nature in Ryedale, Scarborough or the Howardian Hills’ can click the button to request to join. Then an admin can approve you. Members can ‘share’ a post or page or event from elsewhere on Facebook, which is quick and easy or write their own words to accompany a photo so there’s no reason to be shy. Come and add your voice to speak up about local biodiversity. What’s close to your heart? Do share news, stories, questions, requests.

Connecting for Nature account on

Connecting for Nature account on

Our a Twitter account, @CFNature is growing in following (94 accounts follow it at time of writing) but is necessarily biased to the Scarborough end of our patch as most tweets are generated by Tim Burkinshaw (who entered the twittersphere in 2012 as @CarrsWetland). We do have the capacity to share the account details with other users who can tweet as @CFNature now and then – please contact Tim ( to learn more.
There is a (sort of experimental) weekly news round up using a free service called which tries to glean content it thinks is relevant from a range of social media feeds. The free version is pretty rudimentary (Choose up to 30 accounts or search terms and paperli uses an algorithm to decide which ones are important/popular/influential etc.) It comes out each Thursday. If you know any really top social accounts that post about local biodiversity do tell and I we can try to accommodate them. At present it is still hooked up to the CarrsWetland twitter account with Tim as the owner, as it was set up before our @CFNature account came into being.
 If Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and their ilk are all a great mystery to you fear not! Help is on its way…The Connecting for Nature team is formulating a plan for a workshop on Social Media early in the New Year. Please stay tuned for further details…!

Author: Tim Burkinshaw

I work in ecology and biodiversity in North Yorkshire. I'm often found outdoors snapping nature and landscapes or spotting birds. In the garden I enjoy having my hands in the earth and striving for the perfect mix of greens and browns in my compost. As a Daddy and adopter I'm used to endless questions about the world around us, and generally have an answer up my sleeve for most things. If you spot me and my hat in real life or on social media do say hello!

One thought on “Connecting for Nature through Social Media

  1. Pingback: Social Media Event | Connecting for Nature

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