trictly speaking, this editorial should have appeared in the June 2007 issue, when British Birds will be truly 100 years old. For practical purposes, however, we have decided to celebrate BB’s centenary throughout 2007 and Vol. 100 of the journal. There are so many things to look back on during the first 100 years, a mixture of milestones and watersheds, high points and low, new dawns and false dawns. For many years, BB has used the occasional series `Looking back’ to give readers a flavour of the journal 25, 50 or 75 years ago. Both the differences and the similarities between the British ornithological scene at those earlier times and now are thought-provoking. Fifty years ago, the June 1957 issue, as well as containing an editorial entitled `The First Fifty Years’, included a paper (by R. A. Richardson, M. J. Seago and A. C. Church) describing a new species for the British List in Norfolk, Collared Dove Streptopelia decaocto, and another paper, by A. W. Boyd, entitled `Sewage-farms as bird-habitats’. Given what has happened since to both Collared Doves and sewage-farms, these events seem truly from another age. Yet not everything changes so dramatically, and going back to the very first issue of BB, in June 1907, it is reassuring to discover a format of main papers, notes, letters and reviews that has both stood the test of time and served this journal well. The topics covered are by no means so outdated that their only value is in historical
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British Birds – how it works
BB 2000 Ltd, the company that owns and publishes British Birds, is run by a board of directors, all of whom are volunteers. The company employs two full time staff – Roger Riddington is the journal’s editor while Hazel Jenner manages subscriptions and administration – and three part-time design/editorial staff.
The company is wholly owned by The British Birds Charitable Trust (BBCT, registered charity no. 1089422). Neither the company directors nor the trustees are paid for their services, providing their time and enthusiasm because they passionately believe in the value of BB. The Company is managed with a view to making a small profit which can be donated to the Trust to help fund its charitable work.
Over the past six years, this, combined with donations from other sources, has enabled the Trust to give almost £40,000 support to a variety of conservation and educational projects ranging from rat eradication on seabird islands to the study of cuckoo migration, as well as assisting young birders develop their interest.
A full list of projects is given here. The Trust is seeking to expand its charitable endeavours and would welcome donations from like-minded organisations and individuals.