You know the phenomenon when you come across a word you’ve never seen before and on the following few days you see it everywhere? Not coincidence, but a form of selective perception I guess. Maybe it’s that or an increased sensitivity. Anyway, I’ve been reading bits from Chris Packham’s latest book which is primarily about how we have become divorced from nature with some ideas about how to reconciliate. Today I had a zoom meeting with the guy in charge of Dungeness RSPB reserve. He shared a surprising and incredibly positive fact… over the years visitors to the reserve are around 80% members with the rest people who don’t normally nature watch. Since lockdown and the limited re-opening it has turned on its head… 80% of visitors have never been before, are not members of any nature organisation, and a large number have never been to any sort of nature reserve before.
Part of Stodmarsh National Nature Reserve
We’ve all heard how many people have turned to nature during the pandemic. It has once again become really important to the average person. Those of us who always believed the science and who have fought hard to preserve what we have and try and re-wild our land can take heart in this proof that there is a groundswell of concern that might, at long last, start to turn the tide, but it needs encouraging and sustaining.
Another gleam of hope comes with the announcement that farming subsidies will no longer relate to the size of one’s land holding, but to the extent to which it is managed to the benefit of wildlife. Here’s one of this government’s promises that we can all get behind and stop any backsliding! No U-turn Boris!
Pegwell Bay Nature Reserve