All that glitters might be litter...
The baby Coots are now getting really big. It won’t be much longer before they are the same size as their parents, but they are much fluffier still. At the moment they are losing that fluff though and gaining their adult feather – though it will be a while before they have the pristine black and white plumage of their parents. I got a picture of one that is losing its fluffy head feathers, but still has some in place; it looks like it has half a pom-pom stuck to its head, and it did make me smile.
What is sad though is that I saw the adult Coot still building up the nest – only instead of twigs and leaves, it was carrying over an empty crisp packet. In fact, when I looked closer there were several plastic wrappers woven into the structure, as you can see from the photograph of this youngster snuggling up to a Pom Bear crisp packet.
Yesterday, in a small clearing in the woods, I picked up five empty family size crisp packets, two plastic drinks bottles, and the wrapper of a family-size bar of chocolate. Someone had clearly had a lovely feast, but what a shame they couldn’t be bothered to take their litter with them. The same goes for the empty beer and cider cans, and even disposable barbecues that are left abandoned.
I beg parents and picnickers to please make sure they take all their rubbish with them from the park. As the summer really gets into its stride the amount of litter around the park massively increases, yet it’s so easy for us all to enjoy ourselves and take what we brought with us AWAY with us too.