Drought 2…..North Ronaldsay Bird Obs…..

by Bernie Bell - 14:11 on 22 August 2022

A different aspect of drought - the past catches up with us…… https://twitter.com/MetroUK/status/1561307075489271810

Sometimes the very distant past…..  https://www.reuters.com/world/europe/spanish-stonehenge-emerges-drought-hit-dam-2022-08-18/


I’m going to witter on a bit about the North Ronaldsay Bird Observatory which is A GOOD THING…. https://www.nrbo.org.uk/

We stayed there for my birthday weekend a few years ago and had a great time…. https://theorkneynews.scot/2017/09/11/bernie-bell-a-visit-to-north-ronaldsay/

As we are ’Friends of’ we receive the annual North Ronaldsay Bird Report, and the 2021 edition has arrived.  It’s full of good things….initial skimming through revealed stunning pictures – drawings,  paintings and photographs  beginning with, on the inside front cover, a Merlin - defiantly glaring - as they do.

One item is exactly what it says it is – a series of pictures of birds taken month by month through the year by various Bird Obs folk. If I had to choose a favourite, it would be the April  Red-breasted Merganser.  I have a liking for Mergansers and this particular photo is full of life.

It’s not just about good pics of birds, there’s lots of information and facts & figures about, for example, breeding birds, rarities, ringing etc.  And finally there’s a non-avian section  - mostly moths – but again - some beauties.

To digress a bit – many years ago, and it was many years ago, I worked at The Wildfowl Trust, Slimbridge.  At that time the emphasis there was very much on the birds – it was birds, birds, birds. The library was full of bird books – and very little about anything else.  But a change came about when the researchers and observers realised that attention needed to be paid to the worlds in which the birds lived – their habitats and what else lived there, as the birds often needed to eat what else lived there! - so the whole system needed to be conserved in conjunction with bird-life conservation.

The world of birding woke up to the realisation that conservation, and life, really is about more than birds. 

Around that time the title of the organization even changed from The Wildfowl Trust to the Wildfowl & Wetlands Trust – say no more.

Back to the 2021 North Ron. Bird Report – there’s a crackin’ map at the back which brought back good memories of our walks in North Ronaldsay - and it’s a place where you can walk to most places – can’t beat it for ….more than just the bird-life!

If you’re not a ‘Friend of’ the report is available for £15 plus postage.

It's well worth it - very well put together.


Here’s one I made earlier……  https://theorkneynews.scot/2018/03/12/the-lairs-of-the-nuns/



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