Cubs and Scouts help efforts to boost duck conservation

More than 80 London-based Cubs and Scouts rolled up their sleeves and chipped in with efforts to boost duck conservation with BASC South East.

Dan Reynolds, BASC South East director, hosted two events in north London. He spoke to the youngsters about duck conservation, habitat restoration and the role which wildfowlers play.

He explained how duck nest tubes are shown to increase the nesting success of mallard ducks.

The youngsters helped to build four mallard nesting tubes which will be put out at suitable locations by BASC-affiliated clubs and syndicates in the south east of England.

Dan Reynolds, who is an avid wildfowler, a qualified zoologist and a former ecologist, said he would report back to the Cubs and Scouts on the success of the tubes as nesting sites.

“Like those who shoot, the Cubs and Scouts have a longstanding affinity with the outdoors and the environment in which they live,” he said. “It was a pleasure to engage with such a keen audience with practical conservation work.

“Teaching theory is all very well, but actually giving young people a tangible link and allowing them to have practical involvement in conservation is critical. This is particularly true in urban areas where opportunities to become involved in such projects are limited. We will now install the nest tubes and monitor the success this coming breeding season to show the Cubs and Scouts involved the result of work.”

Richard Groves, Scout Leader, 9th Muswell Hill Scout Group, said: “Being a London-based Cub and Scout Group, it is important to bring elements of the countryside into the youngsters’ lives.

“The evenings run by BASC were brilliant at achieving this, and were a real eye-opener for the Cubs and Scouts. It was beneficial for them to learn about all the duck species and the good work that BASC does to promote their sustainable conservation. They particularly enjoyed the hands-on element of making the nest tubes and cannot wait for feedback on how the young ducklings are doing.”

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