Surveys great and small

With the advent of spring comes the chance to get involved in a wide array of wildlife surveys, whether you are interested in creatures great or small. We have provided a selection of this season’s hottest surveys below, some of which can be carried out in your own garden, with others taking you out to explore the countryside.

For more information about surveys visit our wildlife recorders page

Want to learn more about your nearest neighbours?

Take part in the Living with Mammals survey run by the People’s Trust for Endangered Species. This survey takes place between April and June each year and requires you to spend some time each week watching a chosen site, such as your garden for signs of mammals.

Wood Mouse

Photo: Arthur Hoare/Sussex Wildlife Trust

Enjoy chasing butterflies?

The Wider Countryside Butterfly Survey will be taking place again this year to gather information on the status of butterflies in the countryside. Surveyors are given a 1 km square to visit once in July and again in August to note down any butterflies seen. All records collected during the survey will also be included in the Sussex Butterfly Atlas that is currently being put together. To take part contact Penny Green at Sussex Biodiversity Record Centre


Photo: Paul Marten/Sussex Wildlife Trust

Fascinated by flowers?

Wildflowers Count run by Plantlife gives you three different ways to take part in surveying wildflowers, along with a full colour ID guide containing 99 of the UK’s wildflowers.

wildflower recording

Photo: Charles Roper/Sussex Wildlife Trust

Want to join a beetle hunt?

Buglife has launched the oil beetle survey to find out more about these threatened insects. These large beetles are found in flower-rich grassland and heathland, where they are nest parasites of solitary bees. The beetle larvae wait on flowers for a passing bee, on which they hitch a ride to its burrow. Once there, they will feast on the bee’s pollen stores and eggs before overwintering in its burrow.

Rugged Oil Beetle

Photo: Graeme Lyons/Sussex Wildlife Trust

With so many different species to explore, whatever you are interested in there is bound to be a survey you can take part in, to get out in the countryside and learn more about the wildlife on your doorstep.