Bit of a breather

After three days at the Bird Fair I could do with a rest but I am on a secret mission to Scotland this week – I’m sure I will be able to tell you about some of it some time, perhaps.

Tomorrow’s blog will be about a book that I think that many of you would like to read and there is a readers’ offer on it.

The England Biodiversity Strategy was launched on Friday so I haven’t really had the chance to look at it.  If it doesn’t have targets and doesn’t have a cogent plan of action then it won’t do the job that is needed.  But I always found it frustrating in a previous existence that one had to comment on a document on the day it came out before one had read it properly and had a chance to think about it.  So the England Biodiversity Strategy will be the subject of my September newsblast – sign up for it at , it’s free and it will be emailed in the first week in September.  There are over 400 subscribers to the monthly newsblast – but that’s only around one in 10 of the readers of this blog.  Sign up, sign up!

Talking Naturally and eating chips and drinking beer. Photo: Charlie Moores

And, by the way, the interview I recorded with Talking Naturally a few weeks ago has been, rather remarkably, downloaded by over 4000 folk.  The interview ranges widely and touches on how I got a job with the RSPB, what’s the difference between the BTO and the RSPB? how nice are farmers and grouse moor managers? what does the Conservation Director of the RSPB do? and is probably worth a listen (and add the website to your favourites).

Charlie Moores clearly thought that his web stats were wrong and so, frankly, do I, particularly as my Mum doesn’t have a computer so it can’t be her.

My web stats show me that over 4000 of you are unique visitors to this site and although almost all of you access it from the UK, the USA is in three figures and Spain, Germany and even Indonesia are in double figures.  Visitors from 70 countries have popped into this blog – I wonder what they made of the hen harrier ‘debate’?

I got my first royalty cheque for Blogging for Nature last week – not too exciting but well worth having.  I did get a little bit excited until I realised the cheque was in $$ not ££.   Just to re-cap – this book contains 143 blogs from my 2009-2011 RSPB blogging days.  It is much more up-to-date than most books, as the last blog in it was written at the end of March this year.

Ten reasons to buy this book:

  1. At £9.92 (+P&P) it’s ridiculously cheap
  2. The issues discussed are still live today – farming, raptors, how rubbish the government is, egg collecting, reintroductions, how rubbish the government is (so good they named it twice), turtle doves, snow, the Breeding Bird Survey, how rubbish the government is (so good they named it thrice), waxwing invasions, bitterns booming, the Severn barrage, predator control, peat use in gardens and a host of other still-relevant issues.
  3. You are getting this blog for free and I need to eat!
  4. Hilary Benn wrote a very nice Foreword which you’d enjoy reading.
  5. It contains 10 tips on how to blog
  6. It reveals the identity of Sooty – a regular commenter on my RSPB blog
  7. It has a very nice cover with the name of an extinct football team on it
  8. There is no other book in the world that has eastern-crowned warbler, National Farmers Union, Winston Churchill, Minsmere and greenest government ever in its index – and a free copy of the book to the first person who can prove me wrong
  9.  It’s a good book to put in the loo – for reading
  10. I honestly think you’d quite enjoy it


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