As of February 2016, after 416 posts, and over six and a half years of blogging, I'm taking a break.
I've explained why here. There's plenty of past posts to read, though - hope you enjoy them !
Looking for a brilliant present for a young naturalist ? Buy my book ! Available from Amazon UK,
Amazon US and worldwide but buy from a local bookshop if you can.
Archived posts: The following articles are from the month or year requested:

The link between red squirrels and pine martens


As you'll know if you've been following my blog for a while, there are two local animals which I see an awful lot of, despite them being rare in most of the UK. These are red squirrels, Sciurus vulgaris,(which there are loads of around here), and pine martens (which are hard to spot, but I have lots of trail camera footage of them).

Despite them looking slightly alike in the photos above, and both living in trees, they are completely unrelated. Squirrels are part of the rodent family (which have two sharp front teeth, with an orange outer edge), which also includes mice, voles and beavers. Pine marten are bigger, about the size of a small cat. but are from the mustelid family which includes weasels, otters and badgers. But there's one unusual link between them which not a lot of people know about.

The Viking skeletons at Jorvik


I've blogged earlier about my family holiday in England (*), but one of the places we also stopped off at was the Jorvik Viking Centre in York. It's a fantastic visitor centre which shows viking artefacts and skeletons found by archaeologists in what used to be the viking settlement of Jorvik.

One of the things I was particularly looking forward to seeing  were the viking skeletons found in and near York. Both of them had a lot of interesting pathology and diseases, and it's not often that I get to study human skeletons because even though I have been offered human bones, I have strong views on how human remains should be treated, so this was a valuable experience and something I was looking forward to. Here's what I found !

Inglorious: the hidden side of grouse hunting


First of all - a big thank you to everyone who came to hear my talk at Science and More in Gravesend last Tuesday night where I talked about my bone collection, how I started and where it has led me. It was brilliant to see so many people there and have so many interesting questions ! If you'd like to meet me I'm also speaking at the Wigtown Book Festival at the end of September, and the Stornoway Book festival at the end of October.

Anyway, back to this week. Mark Avery has written a book arguing there should be a law on grouse hunting,  how other animals die as a result and how it destroys the moor that the grouse lived on.

Can you guess which bird this is from ?


First of all: remember if you're around Gravesend this Tuesday I'm giving a talk to Science And More at 7pm 6.30pm for 7pm at No. 84 Tea Room and Eatery, 84 Parrock Road. I'll be talking about bones, how I got started, putting together my book and lots more - it'll be great to see you !

Anyway, back to this week. Well, this is an easy skull to identify. From the long beak, thicker than a snipe or an oystercatcher, it's clearly a bird that eats fish, and at 6.5cm long it's clearly the same as my heron skull...wait, did you say 6.5cm ?!?! That's much too small to be a heron.....

Six years of blogging - and a favour to ask


In all the excitement in all the past few weeks, I actually forgot that on 21st July it was the anniversary of six years since I wrote my very first blog post ! That one was about a broken swan skull, that I wrote about here. A lot has changed since then, as you can see from the photos above, but I still get excited every week to share something new with you here.

As it's my blog birthday (sort of), I would like to ask you a special favour. I have never entered any blog awards before, because the people that make up the categories seem to forget about wildlife and natural history. But these ones are different, because they are organised by BBC Wildlife Magazine (which listed me as one of the top 50 conservation heroes in the UK a few months ago).

You can nominate any blog which appears here. There are eight categories, but the one most appropriate to me is "Best Young Blogger.  If you think I deserve the award - and I hope you do ! - all you need to do is email wildlifemagazine@immediate.co.uk, with the subject line "BBC Wildlife Blogger Awards nomination". In the email you'll need to name this blog ("Jake's Bones by Jake McGowan-Lowe") and the category ("Best young blogger") and that's it ! Thank you !

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