Tag: Natural England

Marine Conservation Zones

by on Nov.30, 2011, under North Sea, Northumberland

Last week I had an interesting day in Peterborough, meeting with Natural England and stakeholders from all of the Marine Conservation Zone Projects.  We were there to discuss the protocols that Natural England will use to assess the recommendations from the regional projects, but it was clear that there is great concern across all sectors about how decisions will be made on the designations.

In total there are 127 rMCZ’s (recommended Marine Conservation Zones) and it’s certain that not all will be designated initially.  The Wildlife Trusts have a Marine Conservation Zones page on their website, and we’d urge everyone reading our blog to take a look at that page and write to Richard Benyon MP, Parliament Under-Secretary for Natural Environment and Fisheries, to add your voice to the call for all 127 rMCZ’s to be designated so that we have an ecologically-coherent network of MCZ’s.  Only that way will we be conserving the marine environment for future generations, for our fishing industry and for the wildlife that depends on a clean, healthy marine environment.  We’ve linked to this video before, but it really does give an example of the beauty that exists offshore from Northumberland.  It was a great privilege, and a quite moving experience, to take this video.  Lots of our clients enjoyed superb views of White-beaked Dolphins this year, and we want future generations to enjoy these experiences as well.

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by on Jan.29, 2010, under Birdwatching, Choppington Woods, North Sea, Northumberland, Surveys

Not something I particularly enjoy but I’m currently trying to juggle at least four separate projects ahead of the ‘busy season’ starting in February.  That means a lot of time in the office and birdwatching limited to our garden and the edge of Choppington Woods.  After a couple of months of the Chaffinch flock containing almost exclusively male birds (the species scientific name Fringilla coelebs means ‘Bachelor Finch’ – a reference to the habit of male and female birds wintering separately in parts of it’s range).  now though, the girls are back.  The party’s over, boys.

This morning has seen the Press Release about an exciting offshore survey project that NEWT is a partner in.  Working with Natural England and Marinelife, with additional support  from the Northumberland and Tyneside Bird Club, we’re furthering the existing knowledge of seabird and cetacean distribution in the North Sea.

As I look out of the window this morning there’s a howling northerly and it’s snowing.  Back to the wintry weather 🙂 and a weekend of birdwatching, photography and filming wildlife ahead for all three NEWT guides.

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