A Focus On Nature

Issues in conservation

Memories of Martha

Today has felt very mixed for me, as I sit reflecting on my hotel bed, tapping away at my iPad. The centenary of the death of Martha, the passenger pigeon, is poignant. Mark Avery has just published a book explaining how what was the most numerous bird in the world went extinct in a matter of decades. You can find that book here: http://www.bloomsbury.com/uk/a-message-from-martha-9781472906250/

Today, the cataclysmic decline of that bird feels like the starting gun on natural loss that’s still going on. Now it’s butterflies, hedgehogs and turtle doves that could be eradicated from our countryside in the UK, made extinct by the way we treat nature.

And today I spent the day sitting in a conference centre with RSPB policy colleagues, asking how we can best turn around that decline.

I spent a few cheeky minutes answering emails on my phone during the course of the day relating to A Vision for Nature. If you haven’t heard me blathering on about this yet, it’s A Focus on Nature’s conference this Friday and Saturday.

Over 100 young conservationists will converge on Cambridge to figure out how they can save nature by 2050. And let’s face it we need to.

Along with organisations like the RSPB, young people who care about nature have a big task on our hands.

So, as many people today looked back to Martha, that bird can become a symbol for the challenge we face over the coming years.

I can’t help but feeling that A Vision for Nature will be the start of something amazing, a spark in the keg of the UK (perhaps international?) youth conservation movement.

If you don’t have a ticket yet, buy one here: http://afocusonnature.org/conference/buy-tickets

I hope I’ll see you at the weekend.