Friday, 7 June 2013

Belgians - good with chocolate but not conservation - yet!

Belgian group visit the Allerton project
I spent today at the Allerton project in Loddington, Leicestershire. This is the GWCT’s research and demonstration farm – where we trial numerous conservation techniques to see if they really do work and how they fit in with the farming programme. This farm is also a key way of showing all sorts of people, from farmers, conservationists, politicians and the public, exactly what can be achieved on a working farm.
Today we had a visit from Belgian politicians, farmers and Government policy makers, who wanted to see firsthand how Stewardship schemes work in England and how game management is integrated in with these schemes. They were astounded by how advanced our schemes are compared to what is available in Belgium and also how “up for it” our farmers are – certainly not the case over there!!
It is exciting when GWCT research not only influences our own UK Government, but spreads far and wide to influence and impact on European countries and also the States, which has already been the case in many instances.
I really hope that these Belgians will go back to their country inspired as to what can be achieved, so that the habitats and associated species in their nation can benefit from our research and experience too, after all in many instances their wildlife is our wildlife – human boundaries are just not recognised by many species which move from country to country during the course of a year.        

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