Sunday, 5 April 2009

A heavy heart

I feel very protective towards the Meadow Pipits and the Skylark pair at The Scrubs that are trying to breed - as you know. I have developed such a strong urge to conserve these birds that I would usually think nothing of confronting any dog walker who had the misfortune to have strayed into the grassland.

Today proved to be one battle too many that left me feeling battered and distressed. First there was the guy who showed a blatant disregard for the sign that clearly requested that he stuck to the recognised paths. The fact that we was walking a burly Rottweiler didn't deter me. Although he initially gave me an attitude when I asked him if he could read, he at least said sorry. I also powerlessly watched from a distance, a couple of individuals march directly through the Skylark breeding area. One was a woman with 3 dogs, the other a guy who was clearly short-cutting.

Then the low-flying model aircraft started up, skimming the tops of the grass. Then the thing that I feared the most happened. A Skylark launched itself from the grass in a vertical flight that made me initially think that it was about to burst into song, indeed it did call. But then, after gaining a fair height, it started to head south. I watched it until it was a small dot.

I felt upset, frustrated, angry and extremely defeated all at the same time. I managed to convince myself that I did all that I could and that maybe, just maybe my Skylark might come back.

I'll go in the morning to find out.


holdingmoments said...

That would be a real shame if he has left, because of the inconsiderate nature of some humans.

stuart said...

I wonder if people just don't realize the significance of their actions, or they judt don't care. It's a pity that some people in urban areas don't spare much thought for the wildlife around them. They don't know what they're missing until it's too late.

Warren Baker said...

Hi dave,
I can sympathise with your feelings. my patch is a typical piece of countryside, and it hurts me terribly when I see the inconsiderate people abusing it. I have almost dropped out of society alltogether, I only interact with like minded people.!!!

Eleanor said...

I understand your anger and frustration. I live in Los Angeles and am active in our local Audubon Chapter. I've started a volunteer program which I call "Nature Docents-in the Park" in hopes that if I can increase the publics' awareness of the wildlife around them that maybe they will become more sensitive. My grand hope is that they will even begin to fight for these creatures and for the land that is so essential for their survivial. I've started in one local park with a lake. Our chapter purchased some inexpensive binoculars ($35 US dollars); two or three of us bring scopes. I set up some nature displays and materials. As people pass our "station" we asked them to come look thru the scopes and binoculars and we begin to talk about the birds and from there we talk about the need for open space. We have had a positive response from the public. We are only in our 4th month but I hope to expand this program to other parks. Not much money is involved; all that is needed is dedicated bird lovers who are passionate about protecting birds and other wildlife.