Welcome to the Cumbria Biodiversity Data Centre


As well as groups dedicated to particular animals or plants, Cumbria also has many active local natural history societies around the county. They also organise talks and field meetings which are often open to non-members. You can see the latest programmes on the Recording Events Calendar. Joining a society is a great way to learn more about the county's wildlife. As well as the societies below you may be interested in Cumbria Wildlife Trust Local Support Groups which also organise talks around the county.

Societies actively passing on records

These natural history societies have society recorders who collate information from members and pass these records on to CBDC.

Carlisle Natural History Society

CBDC has a special relationship with Carlisle Natural History Society (CNHS or Carlisle Nats) which has been closely involved with keeping records at Tullie House for the past hundred years. Much of the historical data in the CBDC database has been input by CNHS volunteers or has come from CNHS members and the same is true today. CNHS has a winter lecture programme, with talks every fortnight at Tullie House Museum in Carlisle, and summer field meetings.

CNHS also publishes the county's natural history journal, Lakeland Wildlife, which is sent to full members and affliate members who just wish to access the journal, as well as occasional transactions and other publications.

Carlisle NHS Website | CNHS Facebook | CNHS Twitter


Arnside Natural History Society

ANHS aims to encourage the study and enjoyment of the natural history of Cumbria and North Lancashire. Field trips occur regularly in the summer as do talks and lectures from September onwards each year through to April in Arnside. It has strong links with the Arnside and Silverdale AONB.

Arnside NHS Website

Keswick Natural History Society

Keswick Natural History Society was established in 1967 with the following objectives: 
- To provide a means of studying all branches of Natural History in the company of fellow naturalists.
- To create an interest locally in Natural History, particularly among young people.
- To assist in the preservation of local wildlife and vegetation.
- To co-operate with other Natural History Societies.
- To keep records of local flora and fauna.

Indoor meetings are held on alternate Thursdays between September and March at 7.30pm in the Crosthwaite Parish Room in Keswick. Field outings are organised at various times through the year.

Keswick NHS website

Kendal Natural History Society

The Society holds field meetings during the summer and fortnightly talks/slide shows from September to March in the Friends Meeting House, Stramongate in Kendal.

Kendal NHS website

Alston Moor Wildlife Group

The newest local group, Alston Moor Wildlife Group meets the first Tuesday of each month at the Alston House Hotel at 6:30pm and also organises events in Melmberby and the Cumbrian part of the North Pennines. This group is being supported by North Pennine AONB's Wildwatch recording project. Records come to CBDC via Wildwatch.

Alston Moor WG website | Alston Moor WG Facebook


Note for those who send their records direct to CBDC

If you would like to use Rodis or recording templates from CBDC but would like your records to be affliated to one of these societies on the CBDC database, please just let the CBDC Recording Officer know.



Other Societies

As far as we are aware, these societies aren't currently collating records and members send their records to CBDC directly. Please let us know if this is incorrect.

Ambleside Natural History Society

The Society was formed in 1954 as the Ambleside Field Society and was renamed in 2007. It meets in a spirit of friendship and goodwill to share in all aspects of natural history, geology, the countryside, its scenery, its flora and fauna, its use, its buildings, its history, the activities of its inhabitants.  The Society meets in the Ambleside Parish Centre through the winter months of October to March when talks and presentations are given. In the summer months outings to places of interest are arranged.

Ambleside NHS website

Grange and District Natural History Society

The charity's purpose is "To promote public knowledge and awareness of natural history and other subjects of environmental interest with particular emphasis upon south Cumbria." The group doesn't currently have a website so if you want to be put in touch then let us know. You can find the programme on our recording events calendar.

Maryport and District Natural History Society

The Society meets in Senhouse Roman Museum in Maryport. The group doesn't currently have a dedicated website so if you want to be put in touch then let us know.  You can find the programme on our recording events calendar.