about nicky by nature
Birdwatching from a hide

Hi! I’m Nicky and welcome to my nature themed blog. If fauna, flora, fungi and photography are your thing, then you’re definitely in the right place. I love all that stuff and have done for over forty years – wow! forty years?! If I’m being honest, I really think it’s really a bit longer than that!!

Hopefully, you’ve gathered by now, I’m a huge fan of all things ‘nature’ and I do mean all things! If, like me, you’re interested in….

  • watching, identifying and recording wildlife right there in your backyard or across the globe, from micro moths to the largest of mammals
  • photography – particularly in the areas of wildlife, wildflower, landscape and travel
  • art – from writing about nature to admiring beautiful botanical paintings
  • wellbeing – using the great outdoors to find an inner contentment whether that be by trail running/hiking or by simply drinking your morning coffee out of a gorgeous mug designed with nature at heart – I’m a sucker for an Emma Bridgewater birdy mug and have quite a collection!
about nicky by nature
Morning coffee with Primrose

…..then this blog should be right up your street. It aims to provide a nature table full of great images, writing, news, reviews and discussions. As long as it has a nature theme, then anything goes!

So, who exactly is Nicky by Nature?

I’ve enjoyed the natural world for as long as I can remember and as such, am a birdwatcher, botanist, hiker and trail runner (the latter is sporadic and only a teeny bit faster than the hiking!) but above all, I’m a photographer.

I help out local conservation and wildlife groups such as Butterfly Conservation – they’re always after a bit of hard labour and I’m happy to provide it! You can read about some of my muddier experiences here.

As a ‘wildlife partner’ of  Forestry England and North York Moors National Park, I record and submit wildlife and wildflower sightings. Check out some of the kind of species I’ve recently found for Forestry England in the Big Forest Find.

I have the Botanical Society of Britain and Ireland Identiplant qualification. Doing this qualification was really hard but a great experience and I’d thoroughly recommend it if you want to take your wildflower identification that one step further.


I’m not a professional photographer but I did once win a competition….I came first in the wildlife category of a FSC photography competition a couple of years ago with my photo of a beetle. I nearly didn’t know about it….hubby deleted my congratulatory email as spam!

Above all, I love fieldcraft whether that’s trying to find a specific species or trying to capture the best image I can of my surroundings, wherever that may be.

The thrill of finding a rare flower or hearing the first Chiffchaff of the year will always be special. It’s like being part of a treasure hunt that never ends.

The daily grind

With a full time job and the usual personal commitments, I haven’t quit to travel the world or become a full time naturalist or blogger (these things would be fab but I am a realist!!). I just enjoy the natural world full stop and try my best to incorporate it into my every day living. Hopefully, along the way, I can

  • inspire you to get out and about in your local patch
  • provide hints and tips to make your nature experiences unforgettable and unique to you
  • show you a species you’ve never seen before
  • raise a smile by sharing an image or two
  • help you learn from the mistakes I’ve made
  • give you information to enable you to help conservation groups
  • assist in showing you how the natural world can really help your wellbeing
about nicky by nature
Exploring the forests of Costa Rica

Who knows what the future will bring?

Nicky By Nature is pure escapism and you are welcome to experience it with me.

Where is ‘Nicky By Nature’?

Nicky by Nature HQ is based in Dalby Forest, North Yorkshire in the north of England.

Not far from the east coast and lying at the foot of the North York Moors, Dalby is predominantly forest with areas of moor, meadow and marsh. With interesting features such abandoned quarries, small lakes and recently felled slopes, Dalby is rich in all things nature.

Dalby Forest is my local patch and I love exploring it.

about nicky by nature
Dalby Forest Visitor Centre not far from NbN HQ

NbN HQ also has a garden with a bird feeding station, nest boxes, small pond, messy areas, log stores and veggie patch. It is also the default base for moth trapping and identifying.

Nuthatch at the bird feeding station in the garden at NbN HQ

But I’m not just talking about Dalby…

No, not at all. Nicky By Nature extends further than that. Wherever I may be, I will always try to find a wildlife or broader ‘nature’ angle. I want to explore, see amazing things and experience new landscapes both wild and urban.

If I think you may find something interesting, then I’ll share it with you.

So, what’s the point of Nicky By Nature?

It’s simple. To share nature experiences in a light-hearted, enjoyable and interesting way.

I want you to join me in my escapism in Dalby and beyond. I hope you can experience the enjoyment of my nature life from your armchair or, better still, share your own nature experiences with me.

Dalby Forest: early morning, looking south through the mist