Nature's Calendar: June

As spring turns to summer, new life abounds – from blossoms and butterflies to baby birds and summer migrants, take a look at what you might see this June.

Pictures of fledglings: Wren, blue tit and starling.

Baby birds

June brings with it an abundance of juvenile birds, so keep your eyes peeled when you venture into your garden, local park or nearby wildlife hotspot - look for balls of fluff perched on fences, huddled on branches, or hidden away within the safety of hedgerows. Though they may have fledged the nest, the adults of most species will continue to keep an eye on for their young until they gain full independence.

A spotted flycatcher perched on a fence, eyeing up a fly.

Spotted flycatcher

As master arial hunters, these insectivorous birds make for excellent viewing as they pursue their next meal. Spotted flycatchers can be found in woodlands that border open glades or water, where insects are abundant, as well as mature gardens, parks, and churchyards. Their nest sites are also varied, from holes in trees to wall-climbing shrubbery and the recesses of buildings.

Close up picture of a turtle dove.

Turtle dove

Well known for their delicate appearance, distinctive markings and characteristic ‘purring’ call, the turtle dove is a beloved summer migrant. Currently, the species is at risk of extinction - the UK turtle dove population has suffered a 94% decline since 1995, and a 78% decline in Europe since 1980. Breeding territories are now largely restricted to South-Eastern parts of England, though there are some other locations where they can be seen listed on Operation Turtle Dove’s website. 

Operation Turtle Dove

The RSPB is a part of Operation Turtle Dove, which aims to reverse the severe declines that the species is currently facing.

Pictures of red admiral, peacock and comma butterflies.

Butterflies in flight

There are lots of great butterflies to keep an eye out for in June, many of which you can find in gardens. Red admirals, peacocks and commas are vibrant in colour and intricately patterned, and can be seen throughout the UK. Check out our plants for wildlife guide if you'd like to see what you can do to attract butterflies, and other important pollinators, to your garden.

A bat hanging upside down against a wooden backdrop.

Bats

June marks not just the emergence of baby birds, but bats, too! The warmer weather prompts pregnant female bats to form maternity roosts, where they will gather in large numbers ahead of giving birth. Each female bat has a single pup that will remain with them for just over a month, until the young is old enough to forage and fend for themselves.

Close-up shot of some red poppies in a field.

June blooms

Many of our native plants come into bloom in June and will be an important source of food for pollinating insects, as well as birds and small mammals. In gardens and fields, look out for foxgloves, poppies, buttercups and daisies. By June, shrubs such as dog rose and elder will also begin to flower.