Tuesday, 26 February 2013

Wildwood, goldfinches, wet dog and RSPB campaign championing!

Well, it seems I am not doing very well at keeping to my new year's resolution - to post more... nearly a month! Not acceptable really, but anyway I think I now have a fair amount to write about.

At the end of January my mum and I took a trip to Wildwood Trust (a wildlife park near us) to see how much it had changed since I last went there when I was about 10. They still continue to enthuse the general public on our native mammals and birds alike. They have expanded their collection of mammals which are involved in their conservation programmes, and it was a delight to see some of their usually elusive creatures such as the red squirrel. These kinds of places are essential for educating our younger generations about the importance of looking after our British mammals and birds, but also for instilling a keen interest in the work carried out there.

Anyway here are a few of the photos I managed to take...

Wild Horse (Konik Pony)

Fallow deer

Tufted duck

Red-crested pochard

February started off rather slowly, not too much to say about it really, other than the goldfinches finally taking an interest in the nyger seed we started putting out. They are now daily visitors, as is our GSW which did disappear for a while.

We had a lovely spell of warm weather a couple of weeks ago, what a treat to not have to wear wellies and a big coat! We went for a few nice walks with pup, he does his best to scare away any birds we may see! He got his comeuppance for this... Instead of using the bridge over the pondweed covered water in the ditch, he jumped straight in! This was his first swim, so I chucked my camera to mum just in case he couldn't get out. Luckily for me he clambered out and I was saved from a chilly dip! He was covered in green smelly pondweed and he went a bit mad after this!

Another day, another walk.

..and his new hobby is Litter picking!

Enough puppy pictures, he is such a poser!

The weekend just gone brought very cold weather, so walks, as necessary as they are, aren't quite as enjoyable as usual.

So, I left mum to take Bracken to his puppy class and walk him and I spent the day in London at the National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO) where I attended the RSPB Campaign Champions Training Day. It was a well spent day, with talks from Martin Abrams, Paul Outhwaite and Laura MacKenzie, and activities to get us (the volunteers) to think about what a good campaign entails. We learnt more about how we can use Letter writing, social media, traditional media and Face to Face Lobbying to inform our local MPs about what we think they should be doing to help our campaign. These activities were great, and got everyone sharing their opinions. It was nice to meet like minded people, who had similar interests and views I do. I was also happy that there were some more people of a similar age to me at this event, as the last campaign workshop I went to, I think I was the youngest volunteer. It is nice to know that I'm not the only person of my age to care about nature, birds and the future of our wildlife! Lots of issues were discussed including he badger cull, the Thames Estuary Airport and the RSPB's current campaign - Stepping up for Nature! All in all the day was a success, learning how to campaign and making new friends!

Hopefully my next post will be a bit sooner and will include more birding activities!


  1. Hey Lou, what a great idea. Love the goldfinch phot BTW.

  2. Nice blog Lou !

    Was good meeting you on Saturday. Love a Tufted Duck ! Wildwood looks pretty awesome too!


    1. Ah thanks Tom :) I had a look at yours earlier too! Great barn owl pics!

      Lou :)