Our friend Sue Biscoe on her experience helping monitor Cornwall's choughs.
Thanks Sue !
I've been on Cornish choughwatch every year for 12 years or so and first got inspired listening to Mike Lord giving a chough talk on The Return. Watching from all those different sites around our coast has been a joy, sometimes cold, wet and nearly always windy but completely addictive.
It has been the best stress buster from the working week, and now that I've retired, the best way to spend the spring, seeing those choughs come and go, and finally the raucous chicks fledging. Not to mention all that other fantastic flora and fauna, the squill, the thrift, the Dolphins, the Ravens and gannets etc etc.
And I've enjoyed being part of the team helping the choughs, I'm sure they know!
Our friend and supporter Jani Tully-Chapman has just sent us this wonderful email she received from Kate who is a teacher at First Steps preschool in Plymouth
'Hello following a visit to Mt Edgecumbe in the summer with my daughter Lynsay we purchased a copy of your book The Holiday. As a manager of a preschool here in Plymouth we decided to use the book as a topic for our terms work . The children loved the story and it's characters and created a picture display using variety of textures,resources and materials . We've been on train trip to Cornwall. Had pasties in the park and cooked herrings. Enclosed you will see pictures of our display and hope you enjoy looking at them. Thank you for sharing your story and enhancing the life of inner city children.
And here is their wonderful 'Holiday Wall' collage based on Jani's book The Holiday - a Chough's tale.
It really does look just like Botallack where the choughs live- well done children you are amazing!
On Saturday Rowena, Rob and Mark attended the RSPB's Members' Day and AGM in Birmingham to accept the President's Award on behalf of the Chough Watch team.
Here they are accepting the award from our President, Miranda Krestovnikoff in front of several hundred RSPB members. It's a huge honour and they did us all proud.
Mark wrote in an email yesterday..
'So today I am back in Cornwall and on the cliffs amongst the Choughs. I have returned from the annual RSPB conference at Birmingham with Rob and Rowena, where we accepted the President's Award on behalf of our incredible Chough Team past and present.
Everybody we spoke to was full of congratulations and gratitude to all of our dedicated team. We felt honoured and humbled to be able to represent the team, but would dearly have loved to have the whole ‘Chough Family’ of volunteers with us.
Rowena, Rob and myself were privileged to be able to talk to fellow deserving award winners, RSPB members and key members of the RSPB staff about the project, the dedicated team of volunteers and the success of our ever-growing Chough population.
As a team we received a lovely print of ‘Avocets Arriving’ by Robert Gillmor and a certificate of recognition for all of our hard work.
I popped in to see Mike and Alix Lord today who have volunteered for the project since the Choughs naturally returned in 2001 and together we reflected on an incredible 15 years and a remarkable season. We can’t wait for the next breeding year'.
And here are Mike and Alix holding the award - they received the President's award for their work in Cornwall and with the choughs back in 2002.
If you would like to become a member of the award winning Chough Watch team do get in touch with us email@example.com