Saving threatened habitats worldwide

John Burton's Green Diary

  • 19 March 2013
    Yet another charity is jumping on the ‘Goat Bandwagon’. Age International is using cute little Pygmy Goats to front a campaign calling on grandparents to donate unwante...
  • 14 March 2013
    Conservation and animal welfare are two subjects that are often linked (at least in the human mind). They are in fact two very distinct issues. This was brought home to me on re...
  • 06 March 2013
    Mark Avery (formerly of RSPB) writes possibly the best known and most widely read wildlife blog. A few days ago he wrote: 'My view is that wildlife NGOs aren’t very go...
  • 05 March 2013
    To a certain extent this is a repeat of some of my earlier blogs, but while CITES is meeting in Bangkok, I feel it is worth revisiting the subject of bans. The Vatican and CITES...
  • 26 February 2013
    It is clear that existing anti-poaching measures are not working. In 2012 a record number of rhinos were poached in South Africa, 668 in total, according to the South African go...
  • 21 February 2013
    I have to confess a sympathy for absurdist philosophy. For a rationalist, anti-theist like me, absurdism fits very well with the way a conservationist needs to look at the world. I...
  • 20 February 2013
    What, you might well ask is the connection between the Chaco, and the horse meat scandal affecting the British food industry? The answer is very simple: the demand for cheap bee...
  • 17 February 2013
    Earlier in the week I met Chris Packham in Kew Gardens, where he was filming. When he’d finished we had lunch together. It was our first meeting since he became a Patron o...
  • 13 February 2013
    Readers of this column (sorry, blog – old habits die hard) will know that World Land Trust's Patron Sir David Attenborough has been outspoken in recent years about the hu...
  • 12 February 2013
    For once I am not talking about wildlife reserves, but charity financial reserves. It is considered good practice for a charity to have financial reserves to see them through a...
  • 11 February 2013
    ‘Saving Real Acres in Real Places’ is a strap-line that World Land Trust (WLT) regularly uses. But does it describe us as best we can? WLT is fortunate to have a sen...
  • 05 February 2013
    Not so long ago Maureen Minchin lived in the Waveney Valley of Suffolk. I came to know her through a shared love of nature, and her highly original slipware is decorated with an ab...
  • 05 February 2013
    There is currently an exhibition of Edward Lear prints on display in World Land Trust (WLT) gallery. Alongside works by Lear are prints by his contemporaries, and it is interesting...
  • 05 February 2013
    As the game bird shooting season draws to a close in the UK, a recent report highlights the problems of spent ammunition in the environment. People living in rural areas in Brit...
  • 14 January 2013
    Innovation is championed and rewarded, but rarely funded. At least that has been my experience over the past 40 years in conservation.  By definition new ideas are relative...
  • 14 January 2013
    I like to think that wildlife conservation is more important than politics. But of course in the real world that is often far from the truth. But not always. While I am English,...
  • 04 January 2013
    Comments on Africa, the latest BBC production presented by Sir David Attenborough, have been amazingly enthusiastic, and Sir David continues to enthuse generation after generation...
  • 21 December 2012
    On my way to the office I cross tributaries flowing into the river Blyth, one of which forms a boundary to our garden. What is apparent this year is that a huge amount of silt is b...
  • 05 December 2012
    I am far too old to get enthusiastic about 'social networking'. After all, I grew up at a time when the telephone was still not universal, and it took a year or more to...
  • 04 December 2012
    Concern for the conservation of rainforests really started in the 1980s. Since then several foundations and trusts concerned solely with rainforest conservation have been establish...
  • 21 November 2012
    Just as the final touches are being put on the new reserve funded by World Land Trust (WLT) in Misiones, malicious rumours are trying to scupper it, with no apparent benefits to an...
  • 08 November 2012
    During my many visits to Paraguay, I have been building up a collection of handicrafts, and other artwork and objects from the various indigenous communities. Wherever possible I h...
  • 25 October 2012
    Support of local people is central to every conservation project that the World Land Trust (WLT) funds.  Our partners across the world always employ local people to manage...
  • 03 October 2012
    I watched a video on the internet appealing for funds for a ‘landscape scale’ project to conserve biodiversity on the Isle of Wight, a small island off the south coast...
  • 27 September 2012
    World Land Trust (WLT) often collaborates with American Bird Conservancy (ABC) and their recent newsletter concentrated on declining shorebirds, or waders to those on the eastern s...
  • 20 September 2012
    A devastating disease, known as White-nose syndrome (WNS) because of the symptoms of the fungal infection, has been sweeping the United States of America. Recent estimates sug...
  • 29 August 2012
    There has been a lot of comment, misinformation and discussion on the internet regarding the current opportunity for an intern at World Land Trust (WLT), and even on the WLT’...
  • 10 August 2012
    As the Roman Empire teetered on the brink of collapse, Games became a major feature of Roman life. More and more lavish, while resources were being depleted, and the barbarians wer...
  • 30 July 2012
    Everywhere we read of gloom and doom about the slow rate of economic growth. All politicians of the major political parties, of whatever political persuasion, seem wedded to the co...
  • 19 July 2012
    There are more and more universities advertising Masters’ degrees in Conservation. But how many jobs are there? I ask this because I have more than a slight suspicion that...
  • 09 July 2012
    The Reith Lectures by Niall Fergusson, Professor of History at Harvard University, were this year particularly relevant to the World Land Trust (WLT) and the way it works. The f...
  • 04 July 2012
    Amidst the news of economic turmoil in Europe and all the bad publicity surrounding the banks – in particular the ludicrous salaries and bonuses being paid to bankers –...
  • 28 June 2012
    A letter landed on my desk this week, from 16-year-old Amber Bytheway, who was urging the World Land Trust (WLT) to support her e-petition to ban plastic bags in the UK. I was impr...
  • 22 June 2012
    When looking at endangered species and declining species, despite a huge number of factors being cited as direct causes or even indirect causes, one area that appears to have been...
  • 18 May 2012
    Guest blog by children’s author, Nicola Davies, on our duty to instill in the next generation the importance of protecting the natural world. Nicola supports World Land Trust...
  • 17 May 2012
    Readers of my blog will possibly be aware that I am not a fan of awards. So how come I was present at the Business Charity Awards? Black tie, razzamatazz, and all that.  Well...
  • 23 April 2012
    Some of my readers may like to subscribe to Mark Avery’s blogs. Mark was formerly Director of Conservation at RSPB, but since ‘retiring’ has found a new liberated...
  • 05 April 2012
    World Land Trust (WLT) has always prided itself on its low overheads. But this is proving to be a real struggle. In times of economic downturn, we have had to ‘pedal much fas...
  • 02 April 2012
    Now regular readers of my blog will be aware that I have been pretty scathing about charities and awards ceremonies in the past, and so might be surprised to find out that the Worl...
  • 08 March 2012
    I noticed on eBay recently there was a lot of so-called ox bone on sale and strangely it was going for very high prices. It was also noticeable that much of it looked remarkab...
  • 08 February 2012
    I have started drafting a policy for the World Land Trust (WLT) on human populations. Our patron Sir David Attenborough has spoken about the subject and recently addressed the issu...
  • 28 January 2012
    Under Charity Commission guidance, a charity has a duty to accept all donations unless there can be shown a serious conflict. The general principle is that: “A decision not...
  • 16 January 2012
    As my long-term readers know I am not a great fan of awards and the Charity of the Year Awards is among my pet dislikes. This is because while entry is free (for these awards at le...
  • 22 December 2011
    Is it just the recession biting or has The Big Give disrupted online donations to the World Land Trust? It is too early to know the answer, but what we have recorded is a sharp de...
  • 20 December 2011
    Everywhere I go I seem to be being asked my opinion on the ‘controversy over the polar bear sequence' in the BBC’s Frozen Planet series. But to me there is nothing...
  • 12 December 2011
    Time for my annual whinge about Christmas Goats. Christian Aid, Oxfam, the MercyCorps, PresentAid, and many other aid charities are still promoting an expanding population of goats...
  • 29 November 2011
    Funding Turned Down Recently one of our partner organisations applied to a foundation for funding and it was turned down. Not uncommon, but what was unusual was that the foundatio...
  • 21 November 2011
    The WLT has a policy of not offering enticements to the public to increase support. Free gifts such as tee shirts, bird food etc.,  all have a cost, and the WLT believes that...
  • 14 November 2011
    According to Third Sector (the weekly newsletter of the Charity world) the CEO of UNICEF ‘receives a salary of $1,299,000 per year ($100,000 per month) plus all expenses, inc...
  • 01 November 2011
    Readers of my blog will know that I dislike 'chuggers' (Charity muggers -- the guys that stop you in the street and try and get you to sign a direct debit to a charity). I...

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