Tuesday, 15 June 2010

Today is Global Wind Day

The safari will take a bet that you didn’t know that – we are in the ‘industry’ and we didn’t know it. The powers that be in the European Wind Energy Association seem to have kept under wraps even though another wind farm is under construction just over the horizon.
Not a lot to report from today’s safaris – on Patch 1 the Blackcap was singing again as were what seem to be a lot of (uncounted) Wrens. Patch 2 early on gave us the usual Grey Seal an inordinately long way off at low tide. Plenty of large gulls on the beach but no terns, no Gannets offshore today either. The most noteworthy thing was a group of blokes with a gill net sorting their catch of decent sized flatties and a lot of very small stuff – the mesh must be very fine…wonder if they are licensed? One of their number was clearing Mussels off the outfall pipe like they were going out of fashion.
Spotted this on the Beeb’s news page this morning

Uplands of England 'under threat'

Despite their beauty, communities in rural areas can be impoverished
There must be a "fundamental re-think" about how the nation values the iconic uplands of England, a report has said.
The Commission for Rural Communities (CRC) says a programme of integrated policies is needed to protect hill communities and the landscape.
A year-long inquiry found areas such as the Lake District, Dartmoor and the North Yorkshire Moors are impoverished.
The commission is calling for an approach which would see farmers being paid for looking after the countryside.
The BBC's rural affairs correspondent, Jeremy Cooke, said that despite the scenery, in what are some of England's most treasured regions, upland communities are struggling.
Low wages
Wages are low while house prices have soared as the more affluent leave the city for life in the countryside.
He added that it is increasingly difficult for hill farmers to make any profit, but without their sheep the entire landscape would be radically altered and overgrown…

We’re not sure about that last line…the safari really likes lamb chops but so what if our uplands did manage to re-grow their upland Oak/Rowan forest with Juniper scrub above that. Think of all those extra Redstarts, Wood Warblers, and Pied Flycatchers, not to mention the multitude of upland wildflowers that currently get grazed off as soon as a hint of leaf pokes above the soil.
Come to think of it why do we pay twice for their drainage schemes, once to put them in – tax payers money – then through inflated insurance premiums when water comes off the hills too fast. A radical rethink is long overdue but doubt very much it’ll get anywhere near as radical as the safari would like...complete ban on driven Grouse shooting as well, then maybe there might be a decent number of Hen Harriers on those moors even if the total area of suitable moorland is reduced due to reforestation!
Must get off that high horse, or out of that lifted Land Rover!!!
Just one distant Gannet at lunchtime, no sign of the Grey Seal, sunshine must have frightened it off so no photo again for either your good selves or our colleague.
Blogger seams to have gone a bit bonkers so we've not been able to move the un ID plant pics down here. Anyone know what it is please - our plant ID skills are sadly waning.
Where to next? More pond dipping tomorrow night.
In the meantime let us know if anything is happening in your outback at the moment

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