After six consecutive days of 30C-plus temperatures and with rainfall at only around 15% of average monthly totals so far, wardens at The Lodge in Sandy, an RSPB nature reserve in Bedfordshire, are working to keep their animals, insects, pondlife and trees well hydrated.
All flora and fauna, from bumblebees to bats, need water to stay alive, but some species are finding the heat more difficult than others.
Conservationists suggest putting out a plate of water in the garden or balcony and filling up ponds. However water straight from the tap contains organic concentrates which can be toxic to certain animals. Water left to stand for a day in a bucket is ideal.
I have been leaving out a bowl of water that has been standing for a day for a family of foxes living in my garden.They must be struggling with the very high temperatures and lack of rainfall for over 2 weeks. I sit and watch their antics from my garden office and they never fail to amuse and delight.