byon 1st November 2011 at 11:47 AM (1558 Views)
October 14th and 15th saw the inaugural WildlifeXpo at the Alexandra Palace which I attended on the last day. It does not seem to have been widely advertised, and I only heard about it from Biosphere Expeditions who were one of the exhibitors and is the organisation I volunteer with in Namibia. Entrance was ten pounds which included a donation to the Wildlife Trusts.
The format was several series of lectures running in parallel as well as a main exhibition hall. The lectures covered wildlife photography (e.g. Andy Rouse), wildlife viewing in the UK and around the world, wildlife artists as well as a number of discussion forums on wildlife issues. There was so much do it was difficult to make choices and due to clashes I missed several things I would otherwise have gone to. In the end I heard a presentation by the Cheetah Conservation Fund, a panel discussion on the effects of wildlife tourism on wildlife (nominally Mark Carwardine was in charge, but not if Chris Packham is around), and a panel discussion on volunteering with Biosphere Expeditions presenting its top ten tips for choosing an organisation to volunteer with.
Whilst this initial expo was small and hectic and it was not clear to me who it was aimed at, it turned out to be very high quality as can be seen from the list of exhibitors. The dates for next year (20-21 October 2012) are already in my diary.