The Nature Bible


Inspiration · Resources

Remember, Remember, everyone this November!






Between the months of October 2021 and January 2022, the RSPCA received around 11,785 reports of animals in distress, due to the bright lights and loud, sudden, bangs of firework displays, This year it's feared that Covid and the cost of living crisis forcing some councils to cancel fireworks celebrations could mean this season could be the worst for animals for decades, as more people hold DIY fireworks displays at home.


Unlike advertised events these more informal events can happen without warning on various nights leading up to the traditional 'Guy Fawkes' on 5th November and dogs, cats, horses, other household pets, farm animals, wild animals and birds, as well as those suffering from PTSD, often have a really tough time. Animals have very acute hearing and as well as suffering from intense stress, the shock can send herds of them into fences and rivers, domestic dogs and wildlife onto roads into the path of oncoming cars and give birds and other animals heart attacks. Fireworks and bonfires also create pollution as they release toxic chemicals into the air and their 'remains' litter the environment. So here are a few suggestions to help you and all of your neighbours enjoy their evenings:


1) If you're planning on holding an event or you know of a neighbour, friend or local group holding a display then please only let fireworks off on traditional celebration dates, use low noise fireworks and let your neighbours and village know, verbally and by posting something on your local social media page to warn others in advance.

2) If you have a dog, cat or any other household pet then you can tune into Classic FM's Pet Classics with Charlotte Hawkins which airs from 5pm to 9pm on both Friday 4th Saturday 5th November (Many kennels and rehoming centres use the power of classical music to decrease stress levels amongst their animals).

3) Provide extra bedding for small animals that live outside to borrow under, and cover any cages to soundproof and cut out any bright lights, but better still, create a 'safe space' for them inside.


Why not leave out the fireworks entirely and create your own 'alternative' celebrations with lights and that warm fuzzy feeling achieved with some of the below suggestions:


4) Light up the garden with fairy lights, and/or tea-lights in jam jars and candle holders and give glowsticks or sparklers to the children.



5) Light a firepit, or the bbq and put some marshmallows on skewers for toasting fun, to have with some warm mulled wine or cider.

6) Prepare a hot pot of warming food to enjoy - such as jacked potatoes, baked peppers or vegetarian bangers with mash and make some toffee apples with your windfalls.

7) If you, or anyone you know, is thinking of having a bonfire remember they also release harmful dioxins (and often harbour hedgehogs, small mammals and insects), so if you're planning on building and lighting one please make sure you follow guidelines on what to burn and how to burn it, and check it in order to limit the environmental impact.



Most local councils recommend the following:


Only burn dry material. Never burn household rubbish, rubber tyres, or anything containing plastic, foam or paint.

Never use old engine oil, meths or petrol to light the fire or to encourage it.

Avoid lighting a fire in unsuitable weather conditions - smoke hangs in the air on damp, still days and in the evening. A fresh, windy day is the better, as the smoke will disperse more easily.

Avoid burning when air pollution in your area is high or very high. Never leave the fire unattended or let it smoulder - douse it with water if necessary. Build your bonfire as close to the time you are going to burn it as possible to reduce the chances of small animals climbing inside. Check the bonfire thoroughly before lighting it for any signs of life.


Thought: Maybe councils might like to put on far more spectacular and much more 'everyone' friendly 'illuminated drone' displays in the future, like the ones put together for the G7 summit in Cornwall or the finale of the Queen's Platinum Party celebrations over Buckingham Palace?