Winterwatch – FAB Cone Picking

Thursday, 31 January 2019

Winterwatch - FAB Cone Picking
Desmond Dugan

Winterwatch were interested to find out about the Friends of Abernethy cone picking project. And the best way to find out is to experience it. So Gillian, 6 hardy FAB volunteers, Desmond our cone picking maestro, plus film crew headed into the depths of the forest, trudging through deep snow to experience the splendour of winter in Abernethy and to pick some cones. There had been heavy snow over night and it was sub-zero. The pine cones and tree had a thick layer of snow, which had to be knocked off before we could start, most of the snow landing on the volunteers!

Despite the adverse conditions, with hands and toes numb with cold, we managed to collect some cones, while Gillian interviewed Desmond. Desmond explained what we were doing and the importance of cone collecting to the ongoing woodland project, which provides seedlings for new native pinewood in the UK. The gathering of seeds raises funds for Friends of Abernethy local group towards conservation projects in the Abernethy Reserve. And yes, Gillian did have a go at picking cones!