This morning I met Charlotte Weightman who works for the RSPB's 'Twite Recovery Project' as their Habitat Intervention Officer - fabby title! She is an UTTERLY splendid human being: incredibly knowledgeable, enthusiastic and open to all sorts of ideas, completely committed to working with a vast range of audiences, and having a MASSIVE range of skills from all forms and styles of communication right through to soil science and grass identification expertise. As you can tell - I thought she was truly inspirational.
Charlotte completely converted me to carrying a banner for the tiny maiden-aunt-ish Twite - a chubby little brown bird whose numbers have fallen by 90% in the last 14 years. It is just clinging on here in the South Pennines - with only 100 breeding pairs left.
I will be trying my best to come up with some sound-files and creative writing that Charlotte can use in her campaigns with schoolchildren and farmers to get the message across about how important it is to preserve, conserve, manage and increase our hay meadows that border onto the moors. They are lovely fields - I walk through several of them on my way from my house to the moors. And the Pennine Finch (the local name for the Twite) is incredibly conservative in its eating habits - it only ever eats seeds, but it likes to nest in bracken and bilberry cover on the moors and then nip down to the nearest hay fields to have a seed nosh. More on this later - must get off and put up my Watershed exhibition at Saddleworth Museum!
p.s. sorry about the lack of photos in these last few posts - as you can tell, I had got behind with my blog and so wanted to just let you know wot's been happening.
Char March - I'm a freelance writer and tutor. I am Writer-in-Residence for the Pennine Watershed Project, and this blog takes you through some of the work I've done in that role