By Cambridge News | Posted: September 16, 2015
The RSPB's Rupert Masefield tells how there's a new advocate working to help an endangered bird clinging on here.
When I'm not at work, I like to spend as much of my free time as possible exploring the countryside around East Anglia and I feel privileged to have had some pretty special (in my view) wildlife experiences: seeing and listening to singing skylarks soaring above farmland, and watching reed warblers flitting back and forth from their nest deep in the reeds while I paddled past in my canoe this summer.
But my forays into the countryside in search of nature this summer have also brought disappointment. This year, I haven't seen or heard a single solitary turtle dove, let alone two of them. And this is a bird that used to fill the countryside with its colourful appearance and soothing call.
Admittedly, I haven't made a special trip to one of the few remaining sites where there are known to be turtle doves breeding, but isn't it worrying that I should have to make such an effort to see a bird that 50 years ago bred here in its hundreds of thousands?