Birdfair (Friday 16 to Sunday 18 August) in Rutland is gearing up to address some of the big issues of the day, including climate change and wildlife decline.
Tonight, join Chris Packham, Carrie Symonds, Deborah Meaden, Hannah Stitfall, Isabella Tree, Philip Lymbery and Tony Juniper for a Question Time session looking at the current state of wildlife, chaired by Dominic Dyer. Simon King’s talk on living lighter will look at how we can change the world one step at a time.
On Saturday (17 August), Birdfair will be packed with opportunities for visitors to discover how to take the first steps in a range of careers.
You’ll hear how a range of passionate conservationists – including broadcasters Mike Dilger and Mary Colwell, got started – and get the chance to chat to young conservationists in a variety of roles in career speed-dating sessions.
Also on Saturday, Chris Packham, Dr Mark Avery and Ruth Tingay will be interviewed on stage by Charlie Jacoby from the Fieldsports Channel on the issues surrounding General Licenses.
Birdfair visitors can also look forward to fun quiz sessions in the form of Would I Fly To You and Bird Brain of Britain, hosted by Stephen Moss, plus Iolo Williams’ talk on ‘Life before Telly’ and Angie and Jonathan Scott’s Big Cat Tales.
Other treats in store include Birdfair’s ever-popular wildlife cruises on Rutland Water, the Bird Photographer of the Year Awards with Chris Packham, local food market and for young families a production of The Lion King! In 2019 Birdfair will welcome 45 new exhibitors, and new hand-picked caterers at the ‘Nourish and Flourish Hub’.
‘There’s really something for everyone this year. Whether you’re a Birdfair regular or a first time visitor, this is going to be a fantastic three days. And it’s worth remembering that everyone visiting is making a real difference by contributing towards wildlife conservation projects.’
Birdfair founder and manager
Funds for conservation
Each year Birdfair raises vital funds for conservation across the planet, through entry ticket sales and a charity auction.
This year’s event will fundraise for BirdLife International’s ‘Conserving Cambodia’s Big Five’ project. This project will benefit Western Siem Pang Wildlife Sanctuary, a forest in the Mekong basin that stretches across the border between Cambodia and Laos.
The site is notable for its unusually high concentration of Critically Endangered species; five in total, including the towering giant ibis and white-shouldered Ibis, and three declining vulture species: white-rumped, slender-billed and red-headed.
This globally important site is in dire need of protection to protect its habitat from threats such as unsustainable hunting and deforestation; this year’s project will help secure its future by scaling up existing work with local farmers to develop eco-friendly practices that will improve the fortunes both of the site’s wildlife and those who live on its borders.