Posts tagged ‘animals’
There are times when I feel that in this tough economic climate, conservation falls off the scale of a lot of people, or might it be that they just had no interest in the first place.
Whilst visiting family, and taking in the annual Wildphoto’s event, I experienced quite opposite extremes of this, which sort of brought me to the conclusion, that conservation matters to some whilst with others it is of little importance.
Oxford street in London, is to a person who lives in the highlands an experience in its self. Now you have to understand I was feeling quite upbeat on the number of conservation success stories, which have seemed to have been around this year. Though I know there is still much to do, I thought that we are becoming more educated, and responding in a positive manner, putting wrong back to right.
So I find my self climbing the stairs into Oxford Street from the tube station. As I reached the top step the wind from my sails was just taken away in an instance. I could see no pavement in fact I could see very little except people. So many people that I couldn’t even get my bearings.
A policeman’s helmet offered a friendly opportunity to get information. He was stood on the curb-side though I could not possibly have known this at the time. We pushed our way through the sea of bodies, and asked for directions to our chosen destination. he duly obliged. As I looked onto the street, all I could see were large engined cars, all going nowhere. Some drivers were venting anger and frustration by shouting abuse out of windows, others seemed to want to show the world their car had an audible warning device. The whole experience just seemed like as a species we had lost our way, and that the only thing mattered was to buy something else, which in all probability did little to enhance one’s life.
Moving inside to the RGS and wild-photos brought a degree a of sanity back. Here was a room full of delegates, all viewing the work of a number of conservation photographers. This was a reminder of how beautiful and diverse our planet is. Reports on conservation successes, and of work being undertaken by a band of dedicated people for the good of us all. In other words stuff that should be the concern of us all.
One talk however stood head and shoulders above the rest, again there was shame felt by all who sat in that room, as Britta Jaschinski from Germany showed her pictures of animal suffering at the hands of man. You could have cut the atmosphere with a knife.
If nothing else I think I learnt two things from time in our capital
Firstly imagery still has the power to change attitudes, create emotions and turn wrongs into rights. Photographs and film have in the past changed the way we think and still do so today. However given my Oxford street experience, there is still much work to be done, and to my mind many of us still need to get a perspective on whats really important in life.
Britta’s images are to be used to bring the animals plight to the attention of the chinese government. You can see here work at www.brittphotography.com
Sometimes I despair at people and their comments.
Over the last week two comments have had me in rafts of laughter, which would be even funnier if the people concerned were joking but clearly they were not.
The first comment was about the favourite subject of the British people the weather.
For those outside of the U.K., It has been an unusually wet summer with many outdoor events cancelled. Of course this has hit businesses hard with and estimated 450 million pounds of revenue lost. Serious money.
I was talking to one person whose livelihood obviously depended on such events; he was complaining that his income this year had been dramatically reduced. Next year he said would have to return to normal or he might go out of business. After sympathising with him he then came out the punch line
“The government should do something about it” trying to compose myself I asked what would he would like them to do. Well I don’t know, but I pay my taxes so they should do something. This from an intelligent person, who was clearly looking to blame someone else, for his poor year.
Mr Cameron please take note.
This same sort of attitude came from a comment on the forestry commission website where a dog walker was walking in a Scottish Glen. His complaint was that his dog had found a deer limb and had rushed back to his family with it. Upsetting the children and his wife.
He said there should be a law against leaving limbs of animals lying around. Well Mr Anonymous there is, but given the only predator that the deer has in the U.K. is man, and given that responsible organisations remove whole carcasses after culling such animals. Then the chances are its poachers, which you’ll probably find are not that bothered about the law.
Of course the response from the forestry commission was short and swift.
“ It appears that the area you were walking in is a conservation area and requires that your dogs are under control, your comment suggests otherwise, so if you would like to leave your details we will investigate the matter.”
- As I sit here writing this blog, I can hear the final sound checks that are being made at Rockness across the loch from home. Rockness is a weekend celebration of music and dance where upon approximately 30,000 people will enjoy the festivities.
- Make no mistake this is big business and large amounts of money will change hands over the next few days with many pounds going back into the economy.
These sorts of event’s attract all sorts of people from die-hard old hippies (myself included) to Rock festival virgins. Most will have a great time but a few will become victims from other less scrupulous human beings, who think rules are for others.
But are animals much different?
At my bird feeder this morning a number of birds were quietly having their breakfast whilst others waited in the branches for a free spot to feed.
Out of the blue came a small siskin who sat on a branch and watched the proceedings for a short while before launching an unprovoked attack on a feeding bird, chasing him off.
Not content with one victory he then decided he wanted the feeder to himself and proceeded to start on the other birds. The long arm of natures law arrived in the form of two large chaffinches who drove off the aggressor away before returning to feed themselves.
Despite showing much less aggression, his attempts to return to the feeder were thwarted, and the sentence of no seed was vigorously carried out by the chaffinch, who would not tolerate the siskin’s presence, but seemed quite happy to let others feed.
Despite our freedom rules have to exist in any society and my guess is animals aren’t that much different.