One more week and we'll all be at the National Exhibition in Stafford. From the messages we're getting from the Parrot Society, it would appear this year's show will be the biggest and best to date with more than 7,000 bird enthusiasts expected to attend. Such events are key to the future of all branches of the fancy, not least because they illustrate that this country remains a hotbed of avicultural activity. So it would be nice to see all societies and clubs embrace this show next year and see if we can exorcise the ghost of the old National and bring in the era of a new one.
Had a chat to Ted Easter this week, who once again was crossing swords with the RSPCA. This time Ted was arrested and had to spend several hours in the cells. It's a very undignified business being arrested and you have to wonder if it's entirely necessary. Also, is it a particularly good use of police time for birdkeepers to be banged up? In such matters, where British birdkeepers come under suspicion of trapping wild birds, it would be nice to see a little more consistency from this country's legal system, as penalties seem hugely erratic and largely dependent on the beak concerned. And like we always say, get that paperwork in order or face the consequences.
Every week we seem to come across an increasing number of stories created by companies donating both money and the time of their employees to environmental causes. While we won't cover every event that is stage-managed by some besuited PR person looking to make their company look better than it really is, in general terms, you have to applaud this trend towards corporate environmentalism (if such a term exists). A lot of the stuff they do is small potatoes and very much window-dressing, but the fact that they feel they have to do something for their local community and actually get out and do it, has to be good. Afterall, we all know the term corporate responsibility is a contradiction in terms. So while we won't be fooled by the planting of a few shrubs, nevertheless, we'd rather companies planted flowers than polluted natural spaces.
Hasta la vista...