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A dolphin called Arnie with a shell

Dolphins catch fish using giant shell tools

In Shark Bay, Australia, two groups of dolphins have figured out how to use tools...
Common dolphins at surface

Did you know that dolphins have unique personalities?

We all have personalities, and between the work Christmas party and your family get-together, perhaps...
Leaping harbour porpoise

The power of harbour porpoise poo

We know we need to save the whale to save the world. Now we are...
Holly. Image: Miray Campbell

Meet Holly, she’s an incredible orca leader

Let me tell you the story of an awe-inspiring orca with a fascinating family story...
Humpback whale. Image: Christopher Swann

A story about whales and humans

As well as working for WDC, I write books for young people. Stories; about the...
Risso's dolphin at surface

My lucky number – 13 years studying amazing Risso’s dolphins

Everything we learn about the Risso's dolphins off the coast of Scotland amazes us and...
Dead sperm whale in The Wash, East Anglia, England. © CSIP-ZSL.

What have dead whales ever done for us?

When dead whales wash up on dry land they provide a vital food source for...
Risso's dolphin © Andy Knight

We’re getting to know Risso’s dolphins in Scotland so we can protect them

Citizen scientists in Scotland are helping us better understand Risso's dolphins by sending us their...

Christmas…how to get it wrapped without plastic

It’s that time of year again when there’s only one thing on most people’s minds – and in the shops, on the radio, everywhere you turn. Yes, we mean Christmas. And with Christmas comes presents, and presents means wrapping. Lots of wrapping...

However, much of the wrapping paper and tape available on the high street contains plastic and can’t be recycled. It’s best to leave it on the shop shelves.

plastic free wrapping graphic

If you are not sure if your wrapping paper is recyclable, try the ‘crunch test’. Crunch the paper into a ball and, if it stays in a ball it’s recyclable but if it unfurls itself, it contains plastic and cannot be recycled.

So, what can you use instead? We’ve trawled the web and here are a few lovely, plastic-free alternatives:

  • Use recycled wrapping paper. Check out some shopping ideas
  • Furoshiki, the ancient Japanese art of using fabric to wrap presents

Use newspaper – especially the cartoon section – or brown paper and string. If you don’t like plain brown paper, decorate it with stamps or paint or use buttons, felt, flowers, cinnamon sticks, pine cones, dried orange slices, real holly/ivy and wax to decorate them.

Above are some lovely examples from left to right by Helen Philipps, Natalia Kostyrya, Denise Mingachos and Trinette Reed
Above are some lovely examples from left to right by Helen Philipps, Natalia Kostyrya, Denise Mingachos and Trinette Reed
  • Use plastic-free tape like this. If you’re not keen on brown tape, you could decorate it with stamps or paint
  • Make and use Danish heart baskets. You can make them from paper, card, felt or fabric in different sizes
  • Use reusable gift fabric wraps like these
  • Or if you can sew, create little bags for your gifts

Happy wrapping!

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