Tuesday 25 August 2015

Birdfair 2015

We need not have doubted our decision to take a stand at Birdfair, billed as 'The international wildlife event of the year' 2015.  It was busy, exhausting, exhilarating and we got to talk to hundreds of people.

Our presence was a joint effort by Swift Conservation, Swifts Local Network and Action for Swifts. Our display panels showed everything from the problems Swifts face to the solutions.

Visitors were stunned by our display comparing tracks from Cambridge and the Beijing Swift Project, which we believe is the longest recorded migration of any bird other than a seabird or a shorebird.

We had nest boxes on show, as well as 2 Cheng Shengs playing calls, which seemed to be universally liked by all our visitors. We were not difficult to find! On the corner of our stand, we had an Apple computer playing rolling videos of Swifts in nest boxes and nest box ideas.

John Stimpson kindly provided flat-pack Zeist nest boxes for us to sell. We sold all 34 flat-packs, a few of which were a new design. We also sold a good number of Cheng Sheng attraction kits. Together with generous donations, this all helped to cover the cost of the stand.

A number of people said we had the best stand in the show (there were 380 stands) and Edward spoke to a standing-room-only audience. Edward was told that his was the best talk in the whole show!

It would have been even more exhausting, but for our team of volunteers, so thank you to Vida, Jake, Judith, Chris, Peta, Bill, Bob, Maurice, Tanya, Edmund, John, Tim, Glynne, Rowena and Nick (did I miss anyone?). And thank you to everyone who dropped by to see us.

The pictures below tell their own story:
A gleeful Edward mayer. Photo Judith Wakelam
Edward Mayer left and Dick Newell right. Photo Judith Wakelam

Hu Qiongmei (China Birdwatching Society) and Zhu Lei (English name "Robbi")
from Parrotbill Bird Tours, Sichuan, visit the stand
Gray Jolliffe's cartoon and Tom Lindroo's Swift were visible from a long way off

Bill Murrels left and an animated Edward Mayer

Nick Baker and Dick Newell. Photo Rowena Baxter
Our display comparing the migration of Cambridge and Beijing Swifts. Photo Judith Wakelam
Enlarged version of our map - Click to enlarge

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