“Don’t be ashamed of your ignorance, be ashamed of your unwillingness to overcome it” Bangambiki Habyarimana
So you might have gathered this isn’t a normal Wildlife Wednesday , for a start it’s now Saturday , although this actually happened this Wednesday and in fact this blog should really be titled Wildlife Winge Day.
Let me start at the beginning. Wednesday 5th August. A special day , my first day out in my local patch since lock down and a chance to explore Mouldon Hill Country Par , an area i know well. . Mouldon Hill encompasses a large lake , the river Ray , a disused canal , wildflower meadows and a young woodland managed by the Woodland Trust. The park is on the edge of my home town and less than a mile drive from my house. It’s an area i know well so off exploring i go , camera in hand.
It’s the start of the summer school holidays here in the UK and the park is surprisingly busy for a Wednesday morning , however due to the size of the park it was still easy to get away from the crowds. During the lock down it was obvious there had been a few improvements to the paths. A few new bridges , gates and divots filled in.
One major change , the creation within the park of human free zones , small pockets of wildlife refuge were certain paths / trails had been closed. These paths are clearly signposted with information explaining why the path has been closed. Now as i said before its a large park with nearly 260 acres to explore and enjoy with the areas closed to humans amounting to less than 10 acres.
While resting on a bench opposite on of these paths i was stunned to see a family of six emerge from the closed path complete with two dogs , both of which were running free. And here’s my winge.
If were going to secure our future in a world were we live in harmony with nature , education is key. And here we have parents setting a poor example . We don’t have the right to do whatever we want , in this case a family exploring a wildlife refuge despite having another 250 acres to explore. We all like our own personal space from time to time. If we truly value our wildlife it’s time to stop using animals as a kind of unlimited entertainment.
Is ignorance acceptable ?
While ignorance doesn’t justify their actions at all, at least it’s better than those who choose to stay blind despite knowing full well the repurcussions that their actions can bring. In this case, perhaps it is our responsibility to talk to people and try to discuss why we think it’s important to respect the boundaries set for wildlife. If they are still unwilling to learn from that interaction, that is indeed an unacceptable behavior and irresponsible attitude. 😪
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Bestbeloved will always challenge people who are behaving inappropriately but it is a thankless task and usually gains her abuse or explanations that their children/dogs are perfectly well behaved so it doesn’t matter.
I just shake my head and tut at them which is equally ineffective.