Thursday, 6 October 2011

Newsletter October 2011.

Hello Everyone,

I hope you find time to scroll through our latest trip report in Sierra de la Culebra...it doesn't get much better than that!

Time spent in local coffee bars, purely for research purposes of course, perusing L'Opinion the local newspaper, is often time well spent. Even in Culebra where wolves and farmers have co-existed for centuries, there are concerns  During our last visit, two articles appeared about the problems of being a cattle farmer in Sanabria with its wolf population.  We arrive back to the UK to find images of snarling wolves staring out from front pages of The Times...but thankfully only illustrating Ed Miliband's Predators/Producers conference speech!

However, the wolf...or its public image, however erroneous,...does sell papers and much has been made of reported sightings of wolves in the Netherlands close to the German border and also in Belgium.  . If so this is the first such appearance for more than a century.  There have also been articles this month regarding the colonisation of southern regions of France by some 200 wolves, again after being hunted to virtual extinction there in the 1930s.  The "Big Bad Wolf"  engrained in our psyche is the obvious scapegoat for herd casualties , despite in one case being in an area of France where there is 1 pack of 15 wolves and 8,000 feral dogs! www.bbc.co.uk./news/world-europe-14637701.

BBC Wildlife magazine is mainfeaturing the wolf in its December edition whilst at the same time, early December, a mini-series about the wolf is featuring on BBC1. I look forward to hearing your views after watching these programmes.

It seems so long ago since our August weekend at the International Bird fair at Rutland, but we smile every time we recall meeting "old" friends who travel across many borders to come to this event each year, plus finding new friends and contacts. We really enjoyed swapping tales together then, as always.

We are preparing now for an Iberian  Lynx tour later this month.  This has been a successful year for Iberian Lynx sightings but we are concerned for the future of this rarest of all wild cats as the funding of the wonderful work of LifeLince ends its 5 year allocation this year.  Hopefully we shall have good news to report back to you, and the future of this beautiful creature, rarer even than the snow leopard, will continue to be supported.

So, off to the sunshine of Andalucia, leaving the autumnal chill  that is starting to pervade here,and we shall try our utmost to return with evidence of excellent Iberian Lynx  views!

Best wishes to you all, and keep in touch,

Mgt.

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