Across the country, whatever our circumstances, we all have a lot on our minds at the moment – health, employment and income, and very high levels of uncertainty in many areas. However, the GWCT must continue its fight for an evidence-based approach to conservation.
This fight is one for the future of the countryside, and has continued unabated during the lockdown, with our ongoing research and advice as vital as ever.
When people make wild accusations or use bad information to argue their agenda, our research comes to the fore. We can call upon more than 50 uninterrupted years of data from farmland in Sussex, 25 years of annual count data in the uplands, and 11 years of tagging 10,000 salmon on the River Frome.
But if we can’t pay our scientists, this all stops.
We don’t know what the next few months will bring. The immediate impact on the Trust is likely to be a loss of £1 million, which is 15% of our projected income. Income may fall considerably for some time, so Trustees have taken measures to protect future activity. Sadly, we have already had to place many staff on furlough and reduce most others to a four-day week.
Other expenditure has been cut where possible, and more measures may be necessary depending on how long the crisis lasts. We will face more tough decisions, but your support helps our research, policy and communication work to continue.
Despite that, our scientists are out in the field right now doing the counts of birds, insects and predators – the cornerstones of all our work. The show must go on.
I am proud of how everyone in the organisation has rallied together. If you would like to do more to help us to keep our important work going, please consider donating to support our work today using a payment card of PayPal.
Without the GWCT, the countryside would look very different. Grey partridge could be on the verge of extinction in the UK. Regulation for game shooting would likely be very different, and we would know little about woodcock migration.
Any amount you can give will make a meaningful contribution to what we can do in 2020 and beyond.
You are supporting a unique programme of work. The breadth of research carried out shows how game management can continue to be sustainable and to benefit wider wildlife. Thank you for helping us to make it happen.