Hello, I’m Andrew AKA WalkaboutLad.
Greno Wood, Sheffield, was my stomping ground as a youngster and it’s there that I developed my love for nature. I would follow my uncle Stephen around the woods looking for bird nests, badger setts, rabbit warrens, fallen deer antlers, and anthills. In fact, anything and everything would be observed in the wild or taken home to look at more closely. Perhaps keeping a frog in a suitcase under my bed was taking it a bit far. However, my mum had warned me that I would be out if any more wild animals came into the family home!
I continued to learn about animals after moving to Shropshire as a 12-year-old. I moved on to breeding gerbils, hamsters, and finches; the offspring of which were sold to local pet shops to fund their upkeep. Notes were made on which animals had mated with each other and forecasts were made of the ensuing colouration of the youngsters. Little did I know at the time but I was nearly following in the footsteps of a famous Shropshire man – Charles Darwin.
I have made several visits to the Australian outback to work as a field ecologist and there my passion for nature has crossed international boundaries and evolutionary paths. At home in the UK countryside, I can typically be found searching for signs of mammals, birds, reptiles, and insects. These honed tracking skills have been put to good use in the ‘Red Centre’ tracking down the black-footed rock-wallaby and various reptile species.
I am happiest when amongst nature; this has always been the case. Nothing makes me feel more alive than when all of my senses are stimulated by the natural world. I really cannot get enough!
In the past I have worked as primary school teacher, ecologist, countryside manager, and delivered Urban Buzz for Buglife. Nowadays, I manage woodland in my homeland of Yorkshire.
I am passionate about sharing the natural world with others and I love ‘Making Connections Between People and Nature’.