An event to celebrate the return of the Great Bustard to Wiltshire was held in Marlborough Town Hall last week. One hundred people enjoyed the evening which was hosted jointly by Nicky Alberry, the High Sheriff of Wiltshire and David Scott, the next High Sheriff in Nomination.
David Waters, of the Great Bustard Group, gave a fascinating insight into what has been achieved since he set up the Group over fourteen years ago. Thanks to the hard work and dedication of David and his team of volunteers, there are now around eighty Great Bustards living in the wild on and around Salisbury Plain.
All of this year’s chicks were hatched from eggs laid by the Wiltshire birds. However, in order to help make the population more self-sustainable David has arranged to obtain up to thirty eggs from Spain. These will supplement any eggs laid by the Wiltshire birds this spring.
As well as being an informative and social event there was also an element of fundraising for the Great Bustard project. David Scott asked guests to help the ongoing work of the Great Bustard Group in any way they felt able to.
At least one guest signed up to become a volunteer, while others became members of the group or purchased items – including some smart silk ties – in support of the Group.
The event organisers were grateful for the drink donations by two local producers. The sparkling wine was donated by the Southcott Vineyard in Pewsey and Ramsbury Brewing and Distilling donated beer, gin and vodka. T H White sponsored the canapes made and served by Hospitality Services from Swindon.
For more information of the Great Bustard Group and how to become a volunteer go to www.greatbustard.org