I spent yesterday evening with a bunch of nature conservationists in Washington Zoo. And then we sat outside in the warm evening air, had a beer or two and talked about nature conservation and about birds. Not so different from Home really.
In fact the topics were very similar – do we do nature conservation for nature’s sake or for ours? How do we get the public fired up? What about marine ecosystems? Do commercially important fish count as wildlife too? What will be the impact of Government spending cuts?
And which spring migrants have been seen? A Blackburnian? A Black-throated green? Lots of Yellow-rumps? Only the species are different.
There were three people I talked to whom I might more usually have met in Cambridge – the picture on Jane’s face when she saw me there! – and several existing US friends and some new ones.
As we sat outside a Nighthawk flew over to add itself to Gray Catbird, American Robin, Chimney Swift and House Sparrow. Yes, dear Reader, seeing nature and meeting friends make a cure for jet lag.