Sunday, 25 April 2010

Think once, think twice, think wildlife!

The Derbyshire Peak District is one of the most beautiful places on earth and as well as providing some breathtakingly stunning scenery it is also home to some globally important Eco systems and wildlife.

Every year the Peaks attract thousands of visitors from all over the world with the vast majority of people arriving in the spring and summer months.
Today I briefly stopped at Nether North Grain which is one of my favourite locations in the area and was disgusted at the spectacle that greeted me...
Now this area is often overlooked by tourists because of the harsh nature of it's steep rugged hills and ravines, but there is a layby here which is a popular stopping point for drivers on the Snake Pass.

I actually only stopped myself today at the layby to see if I could spot the Red Kite I had seen earlier and when I got out of the car I was more than a little unhappy to see the amount of litter that had been left there.
An elderly gentleman from London got out of his camper van and assessed the scene with me. "Makes you ashamed to be British" he said...An old cliche, but non the less very true.

When are people in this country going to learn?
Here we were in the Peak District, a place renowned all over the world for it's beauty...Imagine if a American or French or German tourist had stopped their car here and this was their first point of call?
Not that unlikely, because this layby is the first decent sized one if travelling from Manchester along the Snake.
I think they would have been rather disappointed.

Litter of course is a major threat to wildlife and the environment, but it isn't the only problem on the Snake Pass route...Speed is another.
At the height of the tourist season the road is a magnet for sports cars and motorcycles with boy racers testing their 'skills' on the Snakes infamously dangerous windy bends...

For Gods sake THINK!!!
Especially at this time of the year, when wildlife is more active.
On my way back home and just outside Glossop, there was a rather distressed looking lady standing by her vehicle, hazard lights flashing and a dead Sheep in front of her bonnet.

OK accidents happen and sheep are not the best advocates of the Green Cross Code, but when driving in the countryside too many people just don't seem to take into account the prospect of cattle and wildlife in the road and believe me, there were plenty of jaywalking sheep today...

The Mountain Hare is a species I've been trying to get near to recently and sadly I don't think I'll ever get a closer view than this...

One of half a dozen of the little beauties I saw that had succumb to road traffic in the last few days.
This is the most active time of the year for these Hares and they spend a lot of time on the lower slopes searching for mates...Unfortunately the road passes straight through.
Sorry for the rant!
I expect that almost everyone that takes the time to read this blog is a nature lover and doesn't deserve to be preached to...I don't want to teach your Grandmother to suck eggs!
I just hope that by writing this, that maybe somebody who perhaps does drive a little too fast in the countryside or just as bad leaves litter chances upon this post and THINKS...

Blackfaced Sheep, Alport Moor, Derbyshire Peak District...Just how I like them...ALIVE!

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