Saturday, 26 July 2014

Bugs and Birds in North Wales

Sorry I haven't been blogging for a bit, I have been at my Grandma's in North Wales, and as usual it turned out to be a brilliant week.

As it has been so hot, most of the time I have been out doors enjoying all the countryside and the wildlife. I took a main visit to somewhere called Bod Petrual  just on the edge of Clocaenog Forest. It was a great start to the trip, as as soon as we got out of the car, a family of Redstarts were squabbling and posing beside the car park in a Rowanberry.

Redstart picture I took there last year.

As we started the actual walk through the forest we came to a relatively large lake which was full of blue tailed and common blue Damselflies, hundreds of them danced across the water along with a variety of Dragonflies.

Four Spotter Chaser

The first species I came across was the Golden Ringed Dragonfly, I had never seen one before and yet they were so frequent, as we continued the walk around I saw a Common and Southern Hawker both of these were posed next to each other, but I could tell the difference due to the markings down the back.  I also a Four Spotted Chaser.

So a great day and part of a week, however I am going to be back in Wales on Sunday so more news to follow.

P.S. I never heard anything back from my letter to Elizabeth Truss in my last blog, but I will be sending it to her again.

Tuesday, 15 July 2014

Dear Mrs Truss (Environment Minister)......

Dear Mrs Truss

Congratulations on becoming the new Environment Minister.  I thought you might like to take a virtual walk with me and see our wonderful natural world through my eyes.  One of my favorite and maybe the most powerful way of passing this onto you is by an example of a local walk down by the River Weaver.

I have been involved with wildlife conservation for some time now, even though I'm only twelve, and the point I will be trying to put across is that you can now make a massive difference to other kids becoming conservationists of the future, and even you and your kids can encourage the next generation of wildlife protectors, because at the current moment, there's no where near enough...

And so to the walk.

Birds singing, the dawn chorus, foxes returning to there dens, night has become day, and the stirring wildlife of another day brings us to the start of our "virtual" walk. The start scene is a beautiful outspread of fields and marsh, but I look around, and I think where is everything, not the usual Blue Tits, Starlings, but the birds that used to be here i.e Turtle Doves.

As we continue to wander down the trail, with all the grass and pretty much everywhere moist with dew,  we start to come to part of a small wood stretched across the front of the river. Now there's a bit more life here, the dawn chorus is coming to a close and the freshness of an early morning starts to come to a close. I think very hard to myself, well all this conservation work I am doing, and even just taking my local walk, is it all really worth it, will the government (DEFRA) listen to all my and our fellow conservationists or will our struggling House Sparrow disappear, declining without any notice and will our subtle but magnificent Hen Harriers completely vanish from England (it being to late to save).

Now looking out over the river, it looks beautiful with Coots, Moorhen and Mallard ducks squabbling, it makes you think wow well all our rivers are really thriving. Well take a closer look and examine this particular area for a certain amount of time. On our river alone there was a leak from a chemical company last year which came flooding; every five minutes yet another dead fish floated lifelessly on the water. Now this tells us one thing, to even make a start on replenishing wildlife the state of everything at the moment must be sorted out, i.e. make rivers cleaner, put tighter controls in place. Now don't get me wrong there's lots of other rivers that are reasonable, but what I'm saying is that something must be done to save nature before it's to late.

You know when I'm an adult I might not even see a Hen Harrier, maybe not even a Turtle Dove, however the point of a conservationist is to manage and re-assemble the state of something; in my case wildlife, so what I am saying is start a fresh and don't leave wildlife to the side, don't let it turn into a last minute action plan, and most of all never let it go.

I hope you have understood and got a picture of my view of the environment and it's wildlife, and I hope you think through how your going to manage DEFRA, and of course what ever you do I can't change it on my own, but just think about what I have said before you make a decision. you are making decisions about my generation's future. And overall make the right choice.......

Yours Sincerely, Findlay Wilde (12 year old Wildlife Conservationist)

Sunday, 13 July 2014

A Victory for Hen Harrier Awareness

Sorry I haven't been blogging for a bit as I have been involved with my school residential (where I was swimming in the sea off Angelsey when a seal popped it's head up near me) and lots of school work as I'm about to finish for my six weeks holiday. So I am really glad to find time and share with you the Scarecrow results which were announced yesterday. My last blog was all about how we made the Hen Harrier.

As you know I've been waiting to see these results with lots of eager anticipation but not just for winning a trophy and money....

...but for the victory of the Hen Harrier itself. The main reason for putting all the effort into creating this stunning bird was to raise awareness about the worrying decline of the Hen Harrier in England. So by winning this competition, the trophy represents a place in the fight to save Hen Harriers. The £85 I won will be donated to RSPB Sky dancer, and the bird itself will be taken on the Hen Harrier demonstration with Mark Avery at the Peak District on 10th August.

After I claimed the reward I sat down listened to a bit of band music and just pondered on what more I can do to help make a difference in wildlife conservation.

With us all working together these birds won't disappear from our countryside and we won't be beaten by those who stand in the way. 

Finally, a big thank you to the organisers and sponsorsof the Scarecrow competition and for choosing the Hen Harrier as the winner.