Rewilding

It's all about bringing nature back to life and restoring living systems

Rewilding

Imagine our natural habitats growing instead of shrinking. Where space for nature is expanding beyond small pockets of reserves. Imagine species diversifying and thriving, instead of declining. That’s rewilding.

We could be a country in which bare lands spring back to life and are filled once more with trees and birdsong. We could be surrounded by the thrum of insects, colourful butterflies and moths, wildflowers and fungi. We could have beaver, boar, lynx, wolf and bluefin tuna all at home in Britain. Where they belong. Living with us. And that’s just the start.

Rewilding offers hope for wildlife, for humanity, for the planet. It’s our big opportunity to leave the world in a better state than it is today. To turn our silent spring into a raucous summer...

So what is rewilding?

Rewilding is ecological restoration and a little bit more. It's a journey as much as a destination. It’s about seeing things differently, and taking a new approach to nature and our place in the midst of it. Rewilding is...

  • allowing nature to look after itself 
  • helping people to thrive alongside wildlife
  • securing the good things that nature provides - clean air and water, carbon storage, flood control, amazing experiences

We can’t build natural processes but we can help them re-assert themselves. For example, by reintroducing missing species. Or by reducing high populations of grazing animals to help woodlands grow. More woodland leads to more insects, more plants, more birds, more animals.

Rewilding isn’t an alternative to farming. On the contrary, rewilding can be farming’s greatest ally. Rewilding helps restore nutrients to the soil, provides for pollinating insects, purifies water, reduces flood risk and helps resist droughts. It's about helping nature, and that can help all of us.

How wolves change rivers

How wolves change rivers

The film shows how the reintroduction of wolves to Yellowstone in the USA transformed an entire ecosystem. They altered the behavior of deer, allowing trees to grow and all sorts of wildlife to flourish. They also changed the behavior of rivers.

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Six reasons why rewilding is essential for Britain

  1. Our ecosystems are broken The places where you would expect wildlife to thrive have been reduced to wet deserts. The seabed has been smashed and stripped of its living creatures.
  2. Our wildlife is disappearing Many wonderful British species have declined catastrophically over the past century. We’ve lost more of our large mammals than any European country except Ireland.
  3. We need keystone species These vital species, including top predators, drive ecological processes. Their loss in Britain and around the world has impoverished our living systems.
  4. Nature looks after us Naturally functioning ecosystems are better at providing us with clean air and water, preventing flooding, storing carbon and helping us to adapt to climate change.
  5. Communities need to thrive Rewilding boosts local economies where alternatives are scarce. Imagine nature tourism booming, local people earning a fair living and rural populations flourishing.
  6. Wild places help people Experiencing the enchantment of wild nature reconnects people with the living planet. This improves health and wellbeing and builds a shared sense of humanity.  

“Rewilding holds out hope of a richer living planet that can once more fill our lives with wonder and enchantment.”

George Monbiot, environmentalist and campaigner